Laboratory Testing

The major difference between home based drug testing and laboratory testing is that home based drug testing are only qualitative analysis that is just a screening procedure. It just detects the presence of any drug in the body. The confirmatory tests for drugs can not be done using these testing kits. The confirmatory procedures and the qualitative analysis of any drug in a sample can be done only in registered labs. Lab drug test can be done for a large number of samples at a given time and have more accuracy and reliability. This can be done for a large spectrum of drugs.

Lab drug testing can be done using urine, blood, saliva, sweat, and hair follicle as samples. The screening tests are the primary drug testing procedures. It utilizes the techniques of immunoassay like ELISA or Enzyme Linked Immunosorbent Assay, RIA or Radio Immunoassay, CLIA or Chemiluminescence immunoassay, etc. these assays produce results only if the drugs are present in threshold concentrations called cut off concentrations. They can not detect drugs if they are present below this concentration. Home based drug testing also are based on this.

Secondary tests or confirmatory tests are done by using gas or liquid chromatography and mass spectrometry. Laboratory drug test must have the specific data about the detection periods, rate of metabolism, mode of excretion, plasma half life, cut off concentration, etc. based on these data, the results are given. The incidence of false positive and false negative results is less in case of lab drug testing owing to the high levels of sensitivity and specificity.

This kind of laboratory drug testing can be done for work places where a large number of samples have to be handled. The samples are collected and stored in sterile containers before they are sent for testing. The samples are sent as soon as possible in sealed containers. Urine and blood samples are tested the same way as it was collected except in some cases if it has a lot of turbidity due to proteinuria where the samples have to be treated. Certain tests like hair drug testing require prior treatment.

The labcorp drug screening laboratories are a chain of laboratories that are spread across the nation which provide wide scale drug testing facilities. They also have other health related services like HIPAA contacts, careers, etc. These labs correspond to the various standards specified by the government and the regulatory bodies.

Suggested Reading:
National Institute Of Drug Abuse – Battling Drug Addiction
Lab Drug Test
Why should drug testing be made regular?
Detection Period Of Drugs Is What Companies Drug Test Tend To Focus On
Drug Detection and Testing
Mass Spectrometry

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