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Urine Drug Testing Guidelines 2021

Urine Drug Testing Guidelines 2021

There are no guaranteed ways to pass a urine drug test (UDT) except staying clean weed out of your system. Not everyone can avoid these substances because they need them to manage severe pain, beat stress, and more. That is especially since some countries and most states in the US already legalized some of them for recreational and medical purposes. The best thing is to understand how drug testing works and how long certain substances stay in the body.

How Does Urine Drug Testing Work?

UDS or urine drug screening is a non-invasive, pain-free method of detecting the presence of commonly abused prescription and illicit substances. The common purposes of these tests include:

  • Forensics
  • Pre-employment
  • Legal Investigations
  • Return to Service or Duty
  • Prescription Drug Monitoring
  • Addiction or Substance Abuse Diagnosis

What Drugs Do Tests Detect?

The substances tested will depend on the requesting party and the specific panel. With that said, SAMHSA (Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration) requires the inclusion of the following:

  • Amphetamines (Crank, Ecstasy, Meth, and Speed)
  • THC (Cannabinoids (CBD or hemp), Hash, and Marijuana)
  • Cocaine (Coke and Crack)
  • Opiates (Codeine, Heroin, Morphine, and Opium)
  • Phencyclidine (Angel Dust and PCP)

Some requesting parties would require analysis of prescriptive meds, so eight-panel analyzers include the five listed above and the following:

  • Barbiturates (Butalbital, Downers, Phenobarbital, and Secobarbital)
  • Benzodiazepines (Librium, Valium, Xanax, and Other Tranquilizers)
  • Methaqualone (Quaaludes)

There are also 10-panel analyzers that detect the eight substances above plus:

  • Methadone
  • Propoxyphene

Some can analyze:

  • Anabolic Steroids (Processed Muscle-Building Hormones)
  • Hallucinogens (LSD, Mescaline, Mushrooms, and Peyote)
  • Hydrocodone (Lortab, Oxycodone, and Vicodin)
  • Inhalants (Glue, Hairspray, and Paint)

Urine Sample Drug Test Facts

From the name itself, the sample required is your piss, but there are certain rules, standards, or guidelines that must be followed.

The Proper Urine Collection Process

A trained collector will oversee the collection, whether in the collecting facility or off-site. The only difference is that for off-site or collection done in public restrooms or restrooms wherein they cannot cut the water supply, a “monitor” will accompany the urine donor inside while collecting.

That person will ensure the sample belongs to the donor and no adulterations have been done. This is the same for drug observed collections; only the accompanying person is called an “observer.”

With that out of the way, the general procedure involves the following steps:

  • Identity Verification: Present a valid ID.
  • Instruction Provision: The collector discusses the basics and lets you read the instructions on filling out the Federal CCF. You will also be encouraged to ask questions and clarify things.
  • Form Completion: The collector will fill out the collector portion of the form.
  • Preparation: The collector will ask you to remove your jackets, coats, blazers, and head coverings (if not for religious purposes). They can also ask you to remove your boots. Next is to empty your pockets and leave your belongings, such as bags, briefcases, and any possible items that can hide a sample and adultering agents.
  • Washing: You’ll be assisted to the washing area and asked to wash your hands with soap and water and then dry them.
  • Kit Preparation: The collector will give you or let you choose the collection container or kit. You or the collector will then break the seal or unwrap it.
  • Collection: The collector will give you instructions on what and what you shouldn’t do while and after collecting. Once done, hand it in immediately or within four minutes to the collector. It’s best to wrap your fingers around the container or put it in your armpit while heading out of the restroom to keep urine warm for drug tests.
  • Sample Inspection and Label: The collector will inspect the urine submitted to see if it qualifies. If it passes the criteria (discussed below), the collector will seal and label the container for it to be tamper-proof. Make sure you don’t take your eyes off the specimen throughout this process.
  • Form Completion: The collector will ask you to wash and dry your hands. Lastly, he or she will let you fill out and sign the donor portion of the form.

That’s it! All you have to do is wait for your results.

What Is an Acceptable Sample?

Upon sample submission, the urine must meet the following for it to be acceptable:

  • Temperature: 90F to 100F or 32F to 38F
  • Volume: 45 milliliters or more
  • Others: Free of foreign objects, unusual odor and color, and adulteration signs

How Long Will Urine Stay Good for a Drug Test?

Like routine urinalysis, the best sample is a fresh one because of the chemical changes and strict guidelines. The collector would need to ensure the sealed and labeled sample reaches the laboratory within one hour. If not, they can refrigerate it, making it viable for 24hours or freeze, making it viable for six months.

How Reliable Are Urine Drug Screens?

Like most lab procedures, there can also be false positives for the pee drug test, and different procedures have different levels of accuracy, sensitivity, and specificity. Hence, most labs will perform screening and then follow it up with confirmatory tests for positive samples. That said, home test kits might not be as reliable and accurate as those used in labs.

How Long Does Weed and Other Substances Stay in Your Urine?

If you’re a user, knowing how long a certain substance lasts in your system might help you beat the test, especially a scheduled one.

Table of Substances and Their Approximate Clearance Times

Substances Clearance Time (Days)
Amphetamines Two
Barbiturates Two to 10
Benzodiazepines 14 to 21
Cocaine Two to Ten
Heroin Less than one
Morphine Two to Three
LSD Eight
Marijuana (Weed) Three to four for Casual Users

Several Weeks for Chronic Users

Methamphetamine Two to Three
Methadone Two to Three
PCP Seven

How to Test Clean on a Urine Drug Test

There are claims regarding the best way to pass urine drug tests, but testing facilities and procedures improved and continuously improves to ensure these “cheat” techniques won’t work. Nonetheless, although not 100% effective, here are some ways on how to pass UA for drugs:

  • Abstain for at Least a Month: Allow your body to clear the substances and their metabolites before you undergo the test. From the table above, one month would be enough for most compounds.
  • Don’t Smoke for 90 Days: If you smoke marijuana, you should avoid doing so for at least three months.
  • Detox: Detox can also help since it can cleanse the toxins faster. Do note that drug detox kits come with side effects, so it’s best to go for natural detoxes like water and fruit and vegetable smoothie while you’re abstaining from use.

Drug Analysis – In Conclusion

Testing for drugs in urine has long been standardized, from collecting samples to confirming results. Therefore, at this point, it’s challenging to pass it if you haven’t reached the clearance time for the substance you’re using. That’s because as long as your system has detectable levels of the metabolites, the test will catch it.

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