How to choose a drug test kit

November 27, 2018

How to choose a drug test kit

Choosing the right drug test kit can be far more difficult than sorting apples from oranges. There's a massive variety of test kits out there with different applications, performance and more than a fair share of incorrect information.

Choosing a Urine or Oral Fluid Drug Test Kit?

Determining which matrix you need to focus on can have a bearing on whether the drug test kit result will be meaningful in your situation.

There are currently two mainstream testing matrices, Oral Fluid and Urine. 

Urine tends to be somewhat more accurate for the simple reason that the drug concentrations are considerably higher in urine than in oral fluid. It's considerably easier to detect a drug at a concentration of 50 than 25 for example. In fact these are the screening cut-off levels that apply for THC in urine & oral fluid in Australia as at the date of this post.

Generally speaking a urine drug test kit will show a similar though slightly longer period than oral fluid for most drug classes.  Drug test kit results for cannabis are considerably different however.  Cannabis levels persist in urine for considerably longer than in oral fluid. 

There are various stories of cannabis appearing in urine for very long periods of time, but even in heavy use, detection in urine can appear for up to a month. In the vast majority of cases; light casual use of cannabis will appear in a urine drug test kit for 1-2 days.

Oral fluid by its nature tends to hold a lot of extraneous matter including bits of what you ate last night or this morning, coffee, nicotine and other substances.  Saliva is just one component in Oral Fluid. 

Of course, oral fluid testing is less invasive than testing for urine.  Detection periods are somewhat shorter than in urine with cannabis only appearing for less than 24 hours.  Urine is said to test for patterns of use whereas oral fluid tests for recent use. Neither drug test kit will determine if a person is actually impaired at the time; purely that the drug is either present or not.

Testing methodology is particularly important for oral fluid testing of cannabis.  Some devices test for the metabolite of cannabis whereas other devices test for cannabis molecules.  This can mean that a more significant level of the metabolites of cannabis is needed to elicit a positive result in devices testing for metabolism. 

Devices testing for the metabolites of cannabis will not always return a result close to cannabis use because the drug needs to be absorbed into the blood stream before being transferred into saliva.  Most oral fluid drug test kits tend to detect oral contamination of cannabis molecules lodged in the teeth and gums.

Different Drug Test Kit Cut-Off Levels

Different drug test kits operate at different cut-off levels. Additionally, each drug test kit will target different specific drugs within a drug class.

For example there is a notable different between drug test kits in Australia and those in the United States.  For Urine devices, the cut off used for Opiates in the United States is 2000ng/mL whereas in Australia the cut off is 300ng/mL. So you need to consider the cut-off levels that apply and select the drug test kit which best suits your situation .

Other Factors 

There are a myriad of other factors that might impact your choice of drug test kit such as the amount of sample collected by a particular device or the speed and accuracy of course.

Suggestions

Oral Fluid - The Toxwipe 6 drug test kit tends to be user friendly with outstanding accuracy

Urine - The Surestep Integrated test kit is accurate, easy to use and has hygienic non-contact features which makes testing easy and fast.

For more information and recommendations on the device that is best for your circumstances, why not contact our expert team for a chat?





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