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urine drug confirmations

Choosing The Right Urine Test Lab Partners

When it comes time for you to choose a urine testing lab partner, always make sure that the relationship will be the right one for your needs.

The lab that you choose should always stay within industry standards, and maintain the top quality dependable testing methodologies for accuracy of results. Dependable test methodologies are the reason why lab urine tests has survived the test of time, scientific dependability, and credibility throughout various fields and industries. So in order to meet the needs of your industry make sure that your urine testing lab partners have a broad testing menu that can detect a broad range of drugs. This list of drugs should include illicit substances and prescription drugs.

You should also find a partner that has specialized panels for your industry. For example, medical professionals should have a special panel that tests for drugs that are widely available to medical professionals, such as the various prescription drugs. If you are in the sports industry, you may also find it helpful to have access to a urine testing lab partner that can provide testing for a steroid panel to detect steroids and other performance enhancers.

Your choice of a lab partner should include on that has the right laboratory expertise for your needs. Urine testing lab partners should have certifications, and be accredited. If urine testing is the only thing you will conduct, then having a partner with SAMHSA certification will be ideal. If you plan to test hair, saliva, and urine, then CAP-FDT certification will be the right option for your needs. So you should choose an accredited partner with fast and reliable results.

Your urine testing lab partner should provide fast turnaround for your samples, so you can make faster business decisions and get to the desired outcomes for your organization. Having the right people on board can make or break the organization so picking up the right candidate before your competitor does can mean the difference between success and failure. The right lab partner will help you make the right decisions and drive the company success factors with efficiency. However, be careful when choosing a partner based on speed because speed is not a substitute for accuracy and dependability of results outcomes.

To speed up the testing process, a good urine testing lab partner will conduct a special two-tiered process for testing samples. Half of the specimen is tested in a way to differentiate quickly between the negative samples, and those that will need detailed testing. The samples that need further detailed testing take longer to confirm, but you will know who the negative samples are within a 24 hour period because this is what can be quickly differentiated. The negative samples are the ones you need to know about faster so that you can make those hiring decisions, so detailed testing on the samples that may have detected some form of substance are not the top priority when you want to make quick business decisions in HR.

Your urine testing lab partner should not be a vendor to your organization because they should be a trusted friend. When you find a lab that works closely with your specific needs, your business will flourish. Your company needs the support of a good lab that supports the organizational goals with the knowledge and up to date information that develops in the urine testing world. Staying on top of laboratory trends is important to staying competitive as a lab and keeping businesses competitive with a leading edge in hiring clean employees and terminating the intoxicated ones. Let’s work for clean environments.

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Liquid Chromatography / Tandem Mass Spectrometry in Urine Testing Lab

Liquid Chromatography / Tandem Mass Spectrometry (LC-MS/MS) offers today’s best, and accurate urine testing lab results. It combines the advantages of two complementary techniques; Liquid Chromatography and Tandem Mass Spectrometry techniques. High-performance liquid chromatography fractionates the sample to individual analytes while tandem mass spectrometry quantities the analytes.

The fractionating phase is a critical factor to the method’s excellent analytical specificity. Beyond the regulatory necessity, doctors improve patient care by analyzing urinary drug concentrations. Close monitoring of urinary drug concentrations allows regulation of dosing regiments to show the varying metabolic rates on the particular patient, thus improving and personalizing care.

Advantages of LC-MS/MS technology

LC-MS/MS drug testing technology has the highest;

  • Selectivity
  • Sensitivity
  • Accuracy
  • Precision

Liquid chromatography/mass spectrometry offers an alternative drug testing approach that reduces off-line sample preparation needed in GC/MS because moderately nonvolatile compounds can be scrutinized.

With the right equipment, acceptable LC separations can be attained for the polar analytes such as alcohols, amines, and carboxylic acids. This characteristic ability to analyze a variety of compounds in a liquid phase renders LC an attractive laboratory method.

Choosing method for drug testing

There are four key factors to check when choosing method for drug testing:

  • Selectivity – The capability to tell between similar drugs. Similarities in the various drug’s chemical structure can cause false positives if you employ a drug testing method that has little selectivity.
  • Sensitivity – Is the gauge of the lowest drug concentration that can be precisely identified using the test.  The ideal testing technique can detect very low and very high drug concentrations. Low sensitivity causes false negative results. The least drug concentration that can be accurately determined is known as the cut-off.
  • Accuracy – A measure of the closeness of the test results to the real value. The accuracy of a drug testing technique is determined by the method of sampling, sample works up, analysis method, and data processing method.
  • Robustness and precision – The capacity of the testing technique to give reproducible results. The precision aspect is important in an extremely variable sample such as urine.

Testing procedure

Liquid Chromatography

Analytes flow through the carbon-based material (C18) packed steel tube. Compounds are separated in the Colum (a filter). The column has an 18 carbon chain that has a high affinity for drugs being tested and their metabolites, ensnaring them in the column.

The drug compounds are sequentially washed away from the filter as the organic solvent increases.

Figure (a) Different drug classes order

Mass Spectrometry

This aspect of testing uses three phases of separation, each occurring in a quadrupole (Q1, Q2, and Q3).

  • The drug compounds are filtered in the Q1 depending on their intact molecular mass, which is a chemical formula derived the number.
  • In Q2, the drug compounds are fragmented by using a cloud of gas that strikes the compounds and makes it break apart.
  • In Q3, the compounds’ fragments are analyzed based on their molecular weight. For all the compounds, we scrutinize two fragments that are unique to the particular drug.

The above process, triple quadrupole mass spectrometer, is known as the multiple reaction monitoring (MRM). The process reduces the likelihood of false positives occurrence to almost zero because each drug has its molecular mass (parent ion), reaction time and fragment mass (daughter ion). Further, the process of using filters eliminates the effect of complex sample components that cause inaccuracy in an immunoassay.

Figure (b) Multiple Reaction Monitoring

At Premier Medical Laboratory Services (PMLS), we offer best LC-MS/MS urine testing lab results in our complex reference laboratory. To get the most accurate and timely urine testing lab results, call 1-877-335-2455.

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Outsourcing Drug Tests Allows for Better and Faster Results

One of the least invasive ways to monitor drugs in a patient’s system is through urine drug tests. The sample for the test can be done in a matter of minutes and by sending the sample to a secondary company for testing, it frees the workers in the office up for more important tasks related to the care of their patients. Working with a company that specializes in such outsource testing can be a huge bonus to any practice.

Working with an established company can help make the transition between handling the tests in the office and having the work outsourced smooth and streamlined. For offices that are new to this process, an established company with a strong track record will be able to help transition to outsourcing making the change easy to follow through on.

Going with a reliable company will also allow your office to receive urine drug confirmations in a timely and accurate. Results can be accessed as soon as they are available online through a secure site so no need to worry about waiting on postal mail to deliver the labs. There are many options for offices looking to work with an outsourcing lab.

There are many options available for any practice looking to make the move to a dedicated outsource lab. There is not a one size fits all model and the lab will work with the practice in order to achieve a process that works well with their needs, not force the practice to change their work model to conform to the lab.

Working with an outsourcing lab can open space and time in a practice for more patient focused care while still ensuring that all medications are being properly monitored.

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The Downsides of Urine Drug Testing and How to Counteract Them

Urine drug confirmations have quickly become the cheapest and most relied upon variety of drug testing in the health care world. These tests do not come without issues. In order to combat many of these issues, practices are relying more frequently on outsourcing their urine samples to other labs. Here are just a few of these potential issues, and possible means of counteracting them.

 

Difficulty Obtaining Sample

Depending on the situation and state of the patient, it may be difficult to obtain a urine sample upon demand. While hair and saliva are always present, a patient may not be able to void at the drop of a hat. Likewise, some patients may be physically unable to urinate do to illness, pain, or other bodily issues.

Catheters have often been used in instances where a patient cannot void, but a urine drug test is vital to diagnosis.

 

Storage

Due to the temperamental nature of urine, the samples must be stored safely and securely. Improper storage may result in invalidation of the test or an unstable sample.

Many health care professionals have decided to outsource their urine drug tests when storage becomes an issue. These external labs focus on prime care of specimens, delivering the results of the test in a timely manner.

 

Tampering

Urine samples must be taken by a patient in private, but this gives the patient an opportunity to dilute, substitute, or tamper with the urine. Many patients may be nervous or unsure about their test results, and many test results may effect their potential or current employment – thus, patients may try everything they can to pass a drug test.

This remains the biggest issue with urine drug tests. Thankfully, advances in testing have made it possible to notice traces of foreign bodies in the samples. Differences in temperature between the patient and the sample are the largest indicator.

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Three Different Drug Confirmation Types

If you’re a medical professional who needs to quickly and accurately test for the presence of illegal substances in a patient’s system, you may be wondering what testing options are available to you. The increase in the demand for drug tests calls for quick and clear drug conformations. There are a myriad of tests available – here are three of the more popular varieties.

 

Hair

A hair-based drug screening can test for cannabis, cocaine, and amphetamines, as well as a few less popular drugs. Hair-based drug tests are commonly used in the UK and other areas of Europe. As hair tests cannot be altered or adulterated, they are the most likely form of test to stand up in court cases.

 

Saliva

Tests for saliva can only pick up traces of alcohol or marijuana. This test boasts high accuracy (on par with the urine drug confirmation), though that in part depends on what methods/kits/chemicals are used. The only issue with saliva-based drug tests is the time frame: most tests will only register drugs used within the past few days. Saliva-based drug tests are best used in situational cases, where it’s important to know if there was any recent drug use.

 

Urine

While there are several varieties of urine drug testing panels, the most popular form is the standard 5 panel – it tests for cocaine, cannabis, phencyclidine, amphetamines, and opiates. Urine drug confirmations are considered the most accurate and the least expensive, and are therefore popular among health care professionals in the US. The downside to these tests is that it can be altered easily, by the patient or otherwise. A test can also be invalidated if the sample is not properly stored, and many health care offices are outsourcing their urine-based drug tests to professional labs for this reason alone.

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How Drug Screening Can Help Diagnose Pain Issues

A patient arrives with unexplained pain – it could be in their joints, in their digestive tract, or simply generalized pain. A series of tests, scans, and more are administered, with nothing coming up. Many doctors would tell the patient to take a pain killer, head home, and return if the pain continued or worsened.

Something that might not be addressed, however, is the possibility of illegal substances in the patient’s system. With the increased use of illegal drugs around the nation, a urine drug screening could become an expected step in treating a patient for pain complaints.

 

The Pain

Illegal substances have been known to cause a myriad of hard-to-explain aches and pains. Some drugs simply aggravate pre-existing conditions, causing the patient a great deal of pain. A frequent complaint of those taking hard drugs is unexplained chest pain, often caused by inflammation of the heart muscles or surrounding tissue. Withdraw symptoms can also be numerous and otherwise undetectable.

 

The Test

A urine drug confirmation (or UDC) can help a medical professional to rule out any and all illegal substance involvement. The UDC can then either be tested on sight in the lab or outsourced to another lab for testing.

Approaching a patient for a drug screening is much easier than a doctor might think – many patients are fine with doing a screening, as long as it is requested in a professional manner. Patients expect to be run through tests in a doctor’s office, so they won’t usually question a UDC.

 

The Recovery

The presence of an illegal or unprescribed drug in the patient’s system during urine drug confirmations does not mean that their complaints of pain are unwarranted. On the contrary, the pain may point to drug complications such as addiction, unexpected side affects, or a reaction with a separate legal or illegal drug.

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Using Urine Drug Confirmation Outsourcing – The Pros and Cons

UDC’s (urine drug confirmations) are used by a myriad of health professionals today. They’re used so often, in fact, that the urine tests can become difficult to manage. Storing becomes an issue if you run a small practice, and the bad economy and required drug testing for employment means more and more people are flocking to get these tests done.

Outsourcing these UDC confirmations

 

The Advantages

  • Clean and careful sample storage. Good labs will be sure to treat each sample with care.
  • Many services offer personalized procedures, outlined by you. If you have specific needs, any quality lab will be willing to follow your instructions to the letter.
  • The results are fast and convenient. This means you’ll be able to deliver news of the test to your patient quickly.

 

The Disadvantages

  • Cost. Outsourcing your urine drug tests can cost you a bit extra, though it can save your staff and you a lot of time. Weight the differences and make sure that it’s worth it to you.
  • Paperwork. If you’re one who doesn’t enjoy adding more paperwork to your life, you might see outsourcing your UDC’s as more hassle than it’s worth.
  • While outsourcing can help streamline your medical work, it can also complicate matters if you end up working with a poor company. Make sure that the lab you outsource to is accurate, friendly, and compliant with all regulations.

 

Conclusion

Keeping up on UDC confirmation results can be a hassle for any medical professional and their team. With so many people to care for, it’s can be a struggle dealing with a large load of urine tests. If you find yourself needing it, find a high-quality lab to outsource your UDC tests to. It will save you time and effort, so you can get back to what you do best.

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