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What should I know about drug testing?

On Behalf of | Jan 19, 2017 | Firm News

If you’re facing a drug charge in Little Rock, you may be subjected to a urine drug test. While these tests are exceedingly common, many people fail to understand how they are applied and the methods used to determine the presence of drugs in your system. Understanding this process is crucial however to ensure your rights are upheld.

According to Healthline.com, there are two types of urine drug tests commonly used. Immunoassay is typically used as the initial testing procedure, while a gas chromatography/mass spectrometry test will be administered in the event that the first test is positive but you refute the results. Immunoassay testing has been known to return false positives, but is popular because it is less costly and results can be accessed much quicker than with gas chromatography/mass spectrometry. Urine testing can pick up the presence of different types of drugs, such as cocaine, marijuana, alcohol, narcotics and many others. 

Additionally, immunoassay testing is unable to measure the level of drugs in one’s system in the event of a positive result. Instead, they utilize a baseline level, and if this level is exceeded the test subject is considered to have a positive result. It’s recommended that any positive result is followed up with a gas chromatography/mass spectrometry, as this testing method tends to be more accurate.

There are certain procedures that should be taken to ensure test results are accurate. For instance, you’ll be afforded a sterile specimen cup, and may be asked to clean intimate areas to ensure contamination does not occur. In some cases, a technician may be present as the specimen is being collected. This prevents tampering during the test, which could result in a false negative. Upon collection, specimens will be provided to the testing technician and results are often returned quickly when immunoassay testing is utilized. 

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