Substance Abuse Treatment: Is This Your Way Out?

Substance abuse treatment provides people with a way out of their addiction. Addiction is medically recognized as a chronic brain disease. The American Psychiatric Association in 2013 categorized it as a substance use disorder (SUD). Like any disease, (SUD) is treatable, and people can recover from it.

But how is it that only 10% of Americans with substance abuse issues receive addiction treatment?

There are 23.5 Million Americans who need substance abuse treatment. If you are one of them or have a loved one or friend living with substance abuse, read on and seek treatment. 

What is substance abuse treatment?

Substance use disorder (SUD) treatment aims to help addicted individuals stop compulsive drug seeking and use despite harmful consequences. It is long-term, involves multidisciplinary interventions, and incurs costs that readily have options for payment. Additionally, the treatment is most effective when tailored to your needs. Much of its success depends on your commitment to the treatment program.

What Substance Abuse Treatment Does

 It helps:

  • stop using drugs
  • stay drug-free
  • be productive in the family, at work, and in society

The five treatment approaches are:

  • Detoxification 
  • Behavioral therapy
  • Medication-assisted treatment
  • Evaluation and treatment for co-occurring mental health disorders
  • Long-term follow-up to prevent relapse

 In addition, the best results come from integrating these into a treatment plan that is customized to your needs. So let’s dive into these approaches. 


In detoxification, a user safely withdraws from drugs or alcohol, leaving no traces of them in his body. This is the first step in addiction treatment.  Withdrawal can be fatal and needs 24-hour support. Doctors prescribe medication-assisted therapy to prevent complications and ease the intensity of withdrawal symptoms. 

Behavioral Therapy

On the other hand, Behavioral therapies may include systematic use, such as contingency management. It provides incentives for patients to remain abstinent and modify attitudes and behaviors related to drug abuse. The use of psychodynamic therapy helps patients develop life skills to manage triggers that create intense cravings.

Medication-assisted treatment(MAT)

 MAT is the use of pharmacotherapeutics to help restore balance to the neurochemical processes in our brain that are disrupted thru the long-term use of drugs and alcohol. Additionally, it helps manage withdrawal symptoms, diminish cravings, or treat co-occurring disorders. MAT is most effective when integrated with a comprehensive treatment program. 

Evaluation and treatment for co-occurring mental health disorders

Co-occurring with SUD are mental disorders like depression, antisocial personality disorder, and attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder. Whichever came first, long-term recovery depends on getting treatment for both disorders by the same treatment provider or team. 

Long-term follow-up to prevent relapse

Recovery from addiction continues after treatment. The most common forms of aftercare are 12-step meetings, support groups, outpatient care, counseling, and sober living or halfway house. Your treatment team guides you into these aftercare processes.

 The Outpatient and Inpatient Treatment Types

 Two types of substance abuse treatment programs fall into either inpatient or outpatient rehab. Both are focused on rehabilitation, but each has its benefits.

 Outpatient rehab allows you to maintain a normal daily routine while spending 10-12 hours in the facility a week. Suitable for mild addictions, this will usually last approximately 3 to over a year. 

On the other hand, inpatient rehab is intensive and treats severe addictions. It requires 24-hour medical and emotional support and can last for 28 days to six months.

 How much does substance abuse treatment cost?

90% of Americans do not seek substance abuse treatment due to perceived high costs. Are you one of them? Having financial concerns is no reason to delay treatment. Because the good news is that there are options to help cover the treatment cost.

During your treatment planning, discuss payments for rehab. They can help you find many ways to fund treatment costs. This will include assessing your medical insurance plan, Medicare or Medicaid eligibility, and government assistance programs or non-profit treatment programs.

Will you have a job to go back to after treatment?

A federal  Family Medical Leave Act(FMLA) allows employed people 12 weeks without paying medical leave without losing their job. You can use these 12 weeks as a starting point for your recovery journey. 

The long-term cost of addiction is greater than the immediate cost of paying for drug rehab. A clearer mind and restored bodily health are more than the price of treatment. These are compelling enough for you or for anyone you care to go for substance treatment.

So long as you are committed to seeking treatment for substance abuse, you are already halfway there. We now know treatment costs are no reason to refrain from receiving treatment. Therapy providers recognize you as an individual with a disorder and honestly care about your recovery. And if stigma holds you back, government and private organizations have joined forces to destigmatize addiction. You are not alone in this journey. 

Want to know more on this topic? Visit the Ovus Medical Blog where you’ll find articles about drug testing programs, drug testing, and more!

11 Essential Tips in Choosing the Best Alcohol Abuse Center

Approximately 14.1 million adults aged 18 and older in the United States are diagnosed with Alcohol Use Disorder (AUD). The same report reveals that about 7.3 percent received any treatment in the past year. This includes about 6.9 percent of males and 7.9 percent of females with past-year AUD in this age group when broken down. It also notes that people with AUD are more likely to seek care from an alcohol abuse center for an alcohol-related medical problem than specifically drinking too much alcohol.

 What is AUD?

Alcohol use disorder (AUD) is a medical condition characterized by an impaired ability to stop or control alcohol use despite adverse social, occupational, or health consequences. It can range from mild to severe.

Further, changes in the brain caused by AUD can make individuals vulnerable to relapse.

 The good news

Most people with an alcohol use disorder can benefit from some form of treatment. Research shows these favorable findings:

  • About one-third of people who are treated for alcohol problems show no other symptoms after a year.
  • Many reduce their drinking and report fewer alcohol-related problems.

 What’s next after the diagnosis?

A health professional often conducts a diagnosis of the patient’s symptoms.

The patient feels like he has to drink at any time.

  • He can’t control how much he drinks.
  • He feels terrible when he can’t drink.

Then, he talks with the patient regarding his goals and comes up with a treatment plan. He discusses various treatment options. These include staying in a residential or inpatient program, outpatient program, medication, counseling, family therapy, and joining a support group. Such tools are all designed to help him recover from AUD.

The doctor can also

  • refer the patient to an alcohol abuse center to stay for a while
  • or live at home and go to the center for treatment.

Finding the best alcohol abuse center

Bear these tips in mind to help you make the best choice for the patient’s needs and goals.

1. Inpatient/residential treatment programs work best for severe AUD or lack a safe, stable, and supportive living situation.

2. Residential treatment offers 24/7 supervision and care. It has been proven to be the most effective form of care for anyone seeking long-term abstinence.

3. Patients usually stay at a residential treatment facility for 7-30 days; or for 90 days or longer. Studies prove that treatment gets optimized when patients participate in a program for a substantial length of time.

4. A facility that offers varied methods can mostly help its patients. For example, alternative approaches like art, music, and yoga complement evidence-based approaches.

5. A therapeutic community model is an approach to long-term residential care. Additionally, it helps individuals build personal responsibility and accountability while addressing pertinent psychological and social problems in the process.

6. Numbers don’t lie. Look into the facility’s treatment outcomes or success rate. The patient’s goal is long-term sobriety and healthier living.

7. Check how the center handles relapse after completing the rehab.

8. Some alcohol abuse centers offer sober living accommodation as part of an overall treatment plan.

9. Consider the center’s location, amenities, and costs that you have to shoulder.

10. Many states provide funds for alcohol through substance treatment and public mental centers for those without income or insurance. See the directory of single state agencies for substance abuse services.

11. To seek centers with the five signs of higher-quality care, see the NIAAA Alcohol Treatment Navigator. Use this tool to assess the facilities’ credentials, comprehensive assessment, an customized treatment plan. Additionally, you can use it for evidence-based treatments, and continuing recovery support.

 With these tips, choosing the best option is a good start towards the patient’s recovery.

 Check out our website for discreet yet reliable EtG tests that can detect alcohol in the urine.

Alcohol Abuse Program: Why It’s Needed and How It Works

Alcohol abuse is still a current problem in the United States. According to the National Institute of Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA), “more than 95,000 people die yearly from alcohol-related causes”. And it’s not just deaths. Alcohol and alcoholism have given rise to the destruction of marriages, underage drinking, disorders of unborn children, and liver illnesses, among others. Furthermore, statistics of the NIAAA show that alcohol use disorders affect the economy as well, with alcohol misuse costing the country $249.0 billion. So if you have alcohol use disorder and are willing to be treated, you should look for treatment providers with a suitable alcohol abuse program treatment plan.

What’s included in an alcohol abuse program?

There are many types of treatment when it comes to treating alcohol addiction and abuse. It all depends on your goals. An alcohol addiction treatment program may include any or even all of the following:


Alcohol detoxification or detox is when you stop drinking alcohol and give your body time to get it out of your system. As a side effect of abstaining from alcohol, you will experience withdrawal symptoms. These may include nausea, anxiety, and even seizures. This procedure is best managed by a medical professional. Do not try to do this by yourself. Find a hospital or a detox center where you can be an inpatient or an outpatient.

  • Inpatient: This is the best option if you’re a heavy alcohol abuser, as you will likely have more severe symptoms. You will have immediate access to health care providers who can monitor you and give medication-assisted treatment to help you manage your withdrawal symptoms. Inpatient treatment will also help you avoid temptations to go back to your old ways.
  • Outpatient: You can opt to be an outpatient if you were not a heavy alcohol abuser. You can visit your care providers during the day, get the medicine needed to manage your symptoms, and recuperate from home. As an inpatient, you can transition to the outpatient status once your condition improves.

Cognitive-behavioral therapy

Alcoholism is not only a substance abuse problem. It also involves mental health issuesCognitive-behavioral therapy or CBT is a kind of therapy or treatment that helps people identify self-destructive behaviors and change them. Undergoing CBT can help you as a recovering addict discover and avoid behaviors and stress triggers that make you want to drink. You’ll also learn better ways to deal with said stress triggers to prevent undoing any progress you’ve made in avoiding relapse.

Prescribed drugs

Another treatment approach when it comes to helping alcohol abuse recovery involves drug prescriptions. They don’t necessarily cure the addiction, but they can make you feel drinking not as enjoyable as you know it. The prescribed drugs can be any of the following:

  • Naltrexone: prevents you from feeling pleasure when drinking
  • Acamprosate (Campral): decreases the craving to drink alcohol
  • Disulfiram (Antabuse): makes you feel sick or want to vomit upon drinking alcohol
  • Topiramate: also reduces alcohol cravings

A support system

While stopping drinking is mainly an individual journey for you, a good support system will help you with your sobriety. Surround yourself with family and friends who you know will help keep you alcohol-free. You can also join organizations that offer help to recovering alcoholics like Alcoholics Anonymous. This organization provides peer pressure that can keep you from relapsing. It also provides 12 step programs .

Will an alcohol abuse program fully cure alcohol substance abuse?

When it comes to treating alcoholism, you have to accept that, like with any drug addiction, there is no real cure. However, it doesn’t mean that there’s no hope for an ex-alcohol abuser to live a normal life and stay sober. Addiction recovery will not be a smooth journey, but the existence of different alcohol abuse programs ensures the management of your substance abuse disorder so that you won’t relapse. 

For more information about how alcohol and how it affects you, read the Ovus Medical blog.

8 Things about Drug Treatment Programs Everyone Should Know

According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), 19.4%, or nearly 1 out of 5 people in the United States used an illicit drug in 2018. Of this figure, 8.1 million had an illicit drug use disorder.

The chronic or compulsive use of drugs or alcohol cost US$740billion in health care, criminal activity, and lost productivity. This is why medical professionals use treatment programs to help wean away individuals from compulsive drug seeking and use behavior.

What is a drug treatment program?

Drug rehab programs combine the types, components, dimensions, elements, approaches, techniques, therapies, and modalities of treatment and other services based on the severity of an individual’s drug addiction and his/her needs and situation. Substance use disorder, including illicit drugs, can be mild, moderate, or severe.

There are various treatment programs available for people with substance use disorder. What should you know about these programs? Below are eight things to consider.

1. 24/7 substance abuse treatment helpline

Information on drug or alcohol disorder treatment is always available. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) has a round-the-clock free and confidential helpline available nationwide for treatment referral and information service. The helpline received 833,598 calls in 2020.

2. Locating treatment facilities near you

SAMHSA helps you locate a treatment center near you. Check out the site, type your city or zip code in the treatment services locator. Once you click search, the site will display a menu of the nearest treatment facilities. Additionally, the site offers additional information on addiction treatment options, cost of treatment, and modes of payment.

3. Goals of addiction treatment programs

The primary goal of health treatment is for an individual to abstain from taking illicit drugs. Becoming drug-free is only the beginning. Additionally, various types of treatment programs also address problems related to drug abuse. These are medical conditions, mental illness, strained relationships with loved ones, inadequate social and life skills and functioning, poor performance at work or in school, etc. In addition to abstaining from drug use, a treatment program goal is to improve various dimensions of life functioning and relapse prevention.

4. No one size fits all drug addiction treatment program

A person seeking treatment for his addiction has a unique set of life circumstances that played a role in his drug or alcohol misuse. However, the type of treatment program will depend on his particular case. Doctors can customize drug treatment programs based on the severity of the disorder, circle of support, and other medical or mental conditions. Additionally, doctors may also consider a person’s life skills and economic or insurance status. An individual’s active involvement in his treatment process increases its effectiveness.

5. Inpatient or outpatient treatment

Substance abuse treatment that is done in-residence in a hospital or clinic setting for a set period is referred to as inpatient treatment. Inpatient rehab provides residential care to individuals supervised by medical professionals. This allows for a more intensive treatment.

On the other hand, outpatient treatment programs allow individuals to live outside a residential treatment facility while availing themselves of treatment and services. These include staying in sober living facilities. These are usually for individuals with a strong network of social support and who can continue with their life functioning despite their addiction.

6. Short-term or long-term addiction treatments

Treatment that lasts for up to 30 days is considered short-term. Individuals in short-term residential treatments that are intensive usually need a follow-up outpatient treatment program or aftercare program to minimize relapse.

On the other hand, long-term treatments are those that last for three months to a year. It can be a combination of inpatient and outpatient rehab for individuals requiring specialized programs for their addiction.

7. Individual or group therapy

Individual therapy addresses other issues related to drug abuse through behavioral therapy. The objective is to help the person enhance their life skills and tools, and coping strategies to stop drugs or alcohol.

On the other hand, therapeutic communities use group counseling to provide the peer support needed to change behaviors and lifestyles. Along with individual therapy, group therapy that utilizes the principles of cognitive behavioral therapy results in positive outcomes for the individual.

8. Treatment programs work

Studies have shown that substance abuse treatment programs work. Majority of chemically dependent individuals who undergo a treatment program reach a point where they stop using drugs. There is also evidence of decreased frequency and severity of relapse for individuals seeking treatment for their substance use disorder.

Going through the list is an excellent way to know more about drug treatment programs. This can help you, your family, loved ones, or someone you know who may be struggling with chemical dependency. Acknowledging and taking action to treat substance use disorder is usually the first step on the road to recovery.

You may want to check out the Ovus Medical blog news section to know more about drug abuse, testing, and treatment programs.

How to Read Drug Test Cups in 5 Easy Steps

In the 2018 Employment Screening Benchmark Report, about 63% of responding organizations reported conducting drug and alcohol testing as part of background checks. In most cases, companies conduct urine testing through drug testing cups, among others. Learn how to read drug test cups results efficiently by reading on.

Besides pre-employment screening, others use urine drug tests for compliance measures and home substance abuse prevention. For safety, effectiveness, and security of the drug test, drug test cups are FDA approved, and CLIA waived.

Today, drug test cups can screen up to 14 types of drugs in a single test. The test procedure is identical for all cups, which involves following the proper steps to determine an accurate result. Below is a list of steps that can guide you.

5 Easy Steps: How to Read Drug Test Cups Result

Reading a drug test cup result is a simple test method to carry out. Though there are different urine drug test kits present in the market, the test procedure is identical. Below are the five easy steps to determine whether drugs of abuse are present in a specimen collection:

1. Unscrew the cup and collect the specimen

To begin the testing process, the donor must urinate into the drug testing cup to the right volume. An indicator line is present on the side of the cup to enable easy measurement of the sample quantity. At least 45 mL of urine sample is required in urine drug test cups. An insufficient sample may result in inaccurate results.

2. Remove the peel-off label exposing the test results

After removing the peel-off label, you’ll see the test results as indicated by the color bands. In both regions, the presence or absence of color bands will tell whether the drug of abuse is present. Moreover, every panel urine drug test cup has two regions, the control region (C) and test region (T). The control region at the top indicates whether the test is functional, and a test region indicates if the drug under test is present.

Take note to read the result within 8 minutes after the point of collection.

3. Check the temperature strip label

In checking the temperature strip label, it’s necessary to carry out the process within 4-5 minutes after a fresh urine sample collection. The acceptable temperature range for a urine sample is 32-38 degrees C (90-100 degrees F).

The green color will appear to indicate the temperature of the urine specimen is within the acceptable temperature range. If the sticker glows green and does not fade away after 3 seconds, it is considered a fresh valid urine sample. Otherwise, adulteration of foreign substances may be present in urine samples, which will interfere with the drug test and cause false positives or false negatives. 

4. Be sure to read the results after 5 minutes

The presence or absence of colored bands in the result area of the test strips reveals whether a substance abuse test is positive or negative.

You must read the result after 5 minutes. Don’t interpret it after 8 minutes, as the test is invalid.

5. Identify colored lines in two regions

The presence or absence of colored lines in two regions associated with substance abuse determines a drug test result. Here’s how to read a drug test cup results through the use of colored band formation:

Positive results

In presumptive positive drug test results, only one colored line appears in the control region. No colored band appears in the test region for the drug in question. More so, a positive result indicates that the drug concentration exceeds the cutoff levels.

Take note that another drug testing method must confirm a positive test result. Send your cup and specimen unaltered to a toxicology laboratory or SAMHSA-Certified laboratory site for confirmation.

Negative results

In a negative result, two colored bands will show up. One band appears in the control region, and another appears in the test region for the drug in question. Moreover, a negative result indicates that the drug concentration is below the detection levels.

Note that the intensity of the color line doesn’t matter. Even very faint lines indicate a negative reading.

 Invalid results

In an invalid result, the control line fails to show up at all in the control region. Thus, the result is unfunctional and recommended to discard.

Review the procedure again and repeat it with a new test.

In recent years, panel drug testing cups have become a popular drug screening method with most industries due to their convenience and faster drug detection times. Even though the drug test is easy to administer, there are specific steps to consider on how to read drug test cups correctly to prevent inaccurate results.

Looking for affordable and high-quality drug testing kits or drug testing supplies? Check out Ovus Medical’s drug testing cups today!

5 Reasons Why We Test for Drug Abuse

A test for drug abuse shows if a specific illicit or prescription drug is present in a person’s body. It can screen for some of the most common drugs of abuse such as cocaine, marijuana, amphetamine, methamphetamine, fentanyl, opiates, PCP, tricyclic antidepressants, ecstasy, barbiturates, benzodiazepines, and oxycodone.

What Types of Test for Substance Use Disorders Are Available?

  1. Urine drug test. Urine drug testing is the most common of all types due to its convenience, speed, and affordability. Also, because urine is the primary excretory route of metabolites, it’s only logical to use this specimen type.
  2. Hair drug test. Did you know that drugs can stay in the hair for months after use? However, many people disagree with being subjected to it because it cannot prove recent drug use. So if a person used synthetic marijuana a few months back during a night out with friends, or if he took opiates as a form of prescription medication, the drug will show even if he hasn’t used any recently. And due to its complex process, this type of drug test requires laboratory testing.
  3. Saliva drug test. This type of test uses oral fluid for detecting both illicit and prescription drugs. As such, it’s becoming popular. It’s less invasive, doesn’t require restrooms, and affordable too.
  4. Blood drug test. On the other hand, a blood drug test is the most expensive and most invasive of all. That’s why most organizations that have drug testing programs only use it to confirm a positive result from either urine or saliva drug tests.
  5. Sweat drug test. Evaluators typically use this type of drug test for monitoring substance abuse of people involved in child custody cases or those on probation.

But why is there a need to test for drug abuse? Read on and find out.

Test for Drugs Abuse: 5 Reasons Why

1. In treatment centers

In Medication Assisted Treatment, rehab centers, and treatment centers, practitioners use drugs and alcohol testing to ensure that patients are sticking to their treatment plans. If there is proof of recent substance or alcohol abuse, the patient’s plan is adjusted. Because if a patient continues to use illicit substances, his addiction recovery plan won’t work. He will also be at risk for a drug overdose.

2. In workplaces

According to the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence (NCADD), more than 70 percent of those abusing illicit drugs in America are employed. This is why an increasing number of entrepreneurs now have workplace drug testing programs in place. This is to promote health and safety, as well as productivity of employees. With safe, healthy, and productive employees, a business has more chances of increasing its bottom line.

3. On the road

In 2018, 20.5 million people aged 16 or older drove under the influence of alcohol in the past year, and 12.6 million drove under the influence of illicit drugs. Sadly, driving under the influence does not only put the driver and his passengers in danger. He can also endanger other people on the road. This is why when highway authorities suspect a driver of being drugged; they immediately give them a drug test. If they believe the driver has more than the safe limits of alcohol or drugs in their body. If a driver tests positive, the authorities can suspend his license or even sue him for drunk or drugged driving. In DUI cases, drug testing is necessary to ensure the safety of every person on the road.

4.At home

In homes, parents want to drug test their children for fear that they might be using drugs like crack cocaine but lying about it. And rightly so. A study shows that kids lie about their use of drugs. We are all aware of the effects of drugs and how they can affect physical and mental health. And don’t forget about the many instances of drug overdoses that have already claimed millions of lives.

5. Prisons

Drug addiction, especially in prisons and correction centers, is a menace that can put the staff, other inmates, and the public in grave danger. This is why prisons and correction centers have drug testing programs – to help eliminate the presence and use of contraband drugs in the jail and monitor inmate compliance with drug-use conditions, rules, and laws. 

These are the five reasons why we test for substance abuse. It’s to help save lives, relationships, and properties. 

If you need urine drug screens, saliva test kits, or any type of drug test, feel free to visit the Ovus Medical Store. We have an array of drug testing supplies you can choose from.

10 Panel Drug Screen: Questions You Might Be Afraid to Ask

A 10 panel drug screen tests for various drugs in a person’s body. It includes testing for different classes of illegal drugs and prescription medications that are commonly misused in the United States.  

Urine testing for detecting drugs is common in a 10-panel drug test, although evaluators can also use blood and bodily fluids . 

The 10-panel drug test is less common than the 5-panel drug test. Workplace drug testing typically screens for five illicit drugs, and sometimes alcohol. A 10-panel drug test, however, does not screen for alcohol.

10 Panel Drug Test: What does it screen?

The drugs tested on a 10-panel drug test:

  • Amphetamines 
  • Cannabis 
  • Cocaine 
  • Opioids 
  • Barbiturates 
  • Benzodiazepines 
  • Phencyclidine
  • Methaqualone/ Quaaludes 
  • Methadone 
  • Propoxyphene 

What affects the window of detection?

Drug detection times vary depending on the following factors:

  • Type of drug
  • dosage
  • type of sample
  • Metabolism

The approximate detection times for drugs screened in a 10-panel drug test are as follows:

Substance                                                              Detection window

Amphetamines                                                               2 days

Barbiturates                                                                   2 to 15 days

Benzodiazepines                                                           2 to 10 days

Cannabis                                                                      3 to 30 days, depending on the frequency of usage

Cocaine                                                                        2 to 10 days

Methadone                                                                    2 to 7 days

Methaqualone                                                               10 to 15 days

Opioids                                                                        1 to 3 days

Phencyclidine                                                               8 days

Propoxyphene                                                              2 days

A 10-panel drug test may help screen for drug use, but it has limitations. For example, it can’t determine whether a person is on a drug at the time of testing. It tests for the presence of drugs or other compounds as a byproduct of drug metabolism. These by-products and compounds must be present at a specific concentration to be detected.

Who uses this drug screen and why? 

The 10-panel drug test isn’t considered a standard drug test and isn’t as common as a 5-panel drug test to screen applicants and current employees.

Professionals who are responsible for personal and public safety may be required to take random drug testing. This may include:

  • law enforcement officers
  • medical professionals
  • federal/state, local government employees

Some employers require mandatory drug testing. Your employment may depend on a passing result. However, this may be contingent on the laws in your state.

Some states prohibit employers from conducting drug testing on employees whose work doesn’t involve safety-dependent positions. 

What to expect during the screen

A technician can conduct drug testing at your workplace, a medical clinic, or accredited lab test facilities, typically during business days. The medical personnel or technician performing the drug test will provide instructions throughout the process.

The ideal site for a urine test is a single-stall bathroom. The technician will give you a drug testing cup. After filling it with your urine sample, cover the container tightly and return it to the technician.


A 10 panel drug test is not a standard drug test. Employers who require testing use a 5 panel drug test and an alcohol test. Some professions that involve personal and public safety may require regular 10 panel drug tests.

This test detects 10 substances (including prescription drugs) within their own window of detection. These detection times vary with each drug and personal factors, such as individual metabolism.

Labs may repeat positive results for confirmation to avoid false positives. An inconclusive result for substance abuse may require the person to repeat the test.

 For a 10 panel drug test that gives 99% accurate test results, check out Ovus Medical’s 10-panel drug test cup, urine dip card, and saliva drug test.

6 Panel Drug Test: Facts You Need to Know

In drug testing programs, a drug panel refers to the specific drug tested. For example, a 6 panel drug test examines a specimen for the presence of six different substances. But what does a 6 panel drug test for? Read on.

What is a 6 Panel Drug Test for?

Briefly, this drug test is specific to detecting six illegal drugs in a single urine sample.

The most common type of drug testing is the urine drug test because of its ease of collection, affordability, and extended detection period.

What drugs does this cup look for?

1. Phencyclidine(PCP)

Also known as Angel Dust, Phencyclidine, is a wildly dangerous illegal drug. It makes users feel unbeatable, often leading to violence, injuries, and death.

This is why if you suspect a loved one of using this substance, you must have him tested immediately. PCP shows up within 5 days after ingestion.

2. Basic Opiates

The three primary opiates that manifest in the test are codeine, morphine, and heroin. Of the three, heroin is by far the most addictive and dangerous. Codeine is a mild pain reliever. Doctors prescribe it to reduce coughing.

Morphine, on the other hand, is a natural substance from the opium poppy plant where heroin is synthesized. Users can become addicted to heroin even after a single dose. After ingesting heroin, urine drug screen panels can detect it for around 3 to 5 days.

Indeed, pre-employment urine drug testing program for Opiates is one way for businesses to maintain a safe work environment.

3. Amphetamine & Methamphetamine

Amphetamine and methamphetamine are Schedule II drugs. Doctors usually prescribe them to treat narcolepsy and  ADHD.

Both are stimulants and appetite suppressants that increase the release of certain chemicals (neurotransmitters) in the brain. Thereby, users experience the effect of creating mental focus and thus reducing hyperactivity.

Employers screen job applicants and employees to help deter drug use to keep their workplaces drug-free. A drug screen can detect it for around two or three days.

4. Cocaine(COC)

Cocaine is undoubtedly a powerful, expensive street drug that makes users feel energized and strong.

Street names include:

  • blow
  • coke
  • crack.

Cocaine shows up on a urine drug test for up to a week after use.

Employers conduct urine testing thereupon, to avoid the dangers and high cost of employing cocaine users.

5. Benzodiazepine(BZO)

Benzodiazepines or benzos are set Schedule IV drugs under the Controlled Substances Act. They are central nervous system depressants.

People who take benzodiazepines feel euphoria (or high) but can lead to psychological dependence. As a result, they feel they need the drug to cope with daily life.

Detection times in urine can be up to 10 days. Benzos are metabolized in urine, producing metabolites. Hence, metabolites confirm the presence of Benzodiazepine.

6. Marijuana (THC)

Marijuana is a commonly used drug made from the Cannabis sativa or Cannabis indica plant. THC is the psychoactive ingredient of Marjuana which is responsible for the intoxicating effects.

Urine drug tests can detect THC  2-7 days for one time users and up to 10-30 days for chronic users.

Who Uses This Cup?

The 6 panel drug test is standard in health care, workplace, sports organizations, educational institutions, and criminal settings.

Workplace. Employers are required to test an applicant before hiring. Likewise, random testing is crucial after hiring to check for on-the-job drug use.

Sports organizations. Professional athletes usually need to take a test for performance-enhancing drugs or other substances.

Criminal Settings. Drug testing is also involved in a criminal or motor vehicle accident investigation. Moreover, screening may be ordered as part of a court case for legal or forensic purposes.

Health Care. In the healthcare system, it is specifically for treatment and compliance monitoring purposes.

Example: Monitoring opioid use. If a health care provider prescribes you an opioid for chronic pain, he may order a drug test to make sure you are taking the right amount of your medicine.

Educational Institutions. Schools may request their students to take a drug test as a requirement for enrollment. In the same manner, Ivy League universities and community colleges also oblige collegiate athletes to test for stimulant substances.

In summary, 6 panel drug test is a rapid one-step drug screening for the simultaneous, detection of multiple drugs and metabolites in urine specimens.

Check out Ovus Medical. They provide the highest quality drug testing supplies in the market.

How Long Do Drugs Stay in Your Saliva?

Organizations with drug and alcohol testing programs see urine drug screens as the golden standard and thus use them most of the time. However, saliva testing is a type of test becoming more popular with these organizations. As discussed in this article on Ovus, it is because this testing method is quick, easy to do, and non-harmful. A saliva test is also very efficient in showing recent drug use: it can give results in as little as ten minutes. But how long do drugs stay in saliva, and what drugs do these tests detect?

Common Drugs Screened and How Long Do These Drugs Stay in Saliva

How long drugs stay in the saliva depends on the substance.

Legal Drugs


Standard testing for drugs doesn’t include alcohol tests, but you can still test a person on suspicion of alcohol abuse or to check if they are really not drinking alcohol. A saliva drug test can detect alcohol from 6 hours and all the way up to 3 days.


Barbiturates are drugs for treating sleeplessness and seizures. They are prone to abuse because of the relaxing sensation they bring. An oral swab test can detect this drug for up to three days.


Amphetamines are stimulant drugs for curing being overweight, sleeping disorders, or attention disorder. However, some use them for recreation or performance enhancement, both of which are illegal. Saliva testing kits can detect Amphetamines from 12 hours up to 5 days after use.


Benzodiazepines are calming drugs and are a remedy for anxiety or insomnia. However, they are also highly addictive. The drug detection time varies greatly, ranging from 1 to 10 days, and depending on the type of benzodiazepine.

Cannabis (THC)

Many states have already legalized marijuana. However, other states still find marijuana illegal, and those states conduct marijuana testing. Saliva tests can detect marijuana use within 24 hours up to 72 hours.


Since some doctors prescribe opioids for pain relief, some end up abusing these drugs. One popular and illegal opioid is heroin. Statistics show that its misuse is currently an epidemic in the United States. Detection times of the different kinds of opioids vary from an hour after use and up to 10 days.

Illegal Drugs


Also known as “meth,” it is an illegal stimulant that brings happiness to the user. An oral drug test can detect Meth in as little as 10 minutes after use and as long as four days.


Cocaine is a very infamous and highly addictive stimulant drug, and it is illegal to use and possess this substance. Saliva tests cannot detect it after 72 hours.

Phencyclidine (PCP)

Phencyclidine or PCP is a hallucinogenic substance. The user becomes very ecstatic and disconnected from normal life. Saliva drug tests can detect it from 24 hours up to 10 days after use.

Methylenedioxy-Methamphetamine (MDMA)

Rave party goers commonly use this drug, also known as ecstasy or Molly. An oral test can detect it an hour after use, but all traces disappear 24 hours after use.

How Long Do Drugs Stay in Saliva – Other Factors

Even with these benchmarks, certain factors affect how long drugs stay in saliva. These include an individual’s metabolism, age, body fat percentage, tolerance for drugs, the amount of drug taken, and even the purity of the drug itself.

Want to buy high-quality but affordable saliva drug tests? Check out Ovus Medical’s oral swabs.

12 Panel Drug Test: Frequently Asked Questions

The National Survey on Drug Use reported an increase in the abuse and diversion for illicit use of OxyContin and other prescription medications. These drugs can’t show up in a standard 5 panel drug test. As a result, many organizations consider expanding their testing standards to a 12 panel drug test to ensure workplace safety.

With this drug test, everything screened in a 10 panel test is included with additional testing for prescription painkillers and extended opiates, as well as other controlled substances. Read on to know more about this.

What does a 12 panel drug test cup test for?

The purpose of a 12 panel drug screen is to check for illicit substances. This panel drug test includes drug screening for:

  • Amphetamines (AMP)
  • Barbiturates (BAR)
  • Benzodiazepines (BZO)
  • Buprenorphine (BUP)
  • Cocaine (COC)
  • Ecstasy (MDMA)
  • Marijuana (THC)
  • Methadone (MTD)
  • Methamphetamines (MET)
  • Opiates (OPI/MOR)
  • Oxycodone (OXY)
  • pH and Creatinine or Adulterants (ADLTX)


Does Suboxone show up on this drug test?

Suboxone is a combination of buprenorphine and naloxone used to treat excessive use of opioids. Although it is a prescription medicine, it is still part of the drug screening process.

When it comes to panel drug testing, the 12 panel drug test can detect the presence of Suboxone. However, positive results will appear as buprenorphine which is one of its active ingredients.

Does Acid show up on a panel test?

Acid or LSD has one of the shortest detection times, and urine tests can detect it up to 8 hours after consumption. However, it will not show up on a 12 panel urine drug test, but there’s a separate LSD urine test available now in the market.

Does Wellbutrin show up?

Wellbutrin is an antidepressant drug that doesn’t get you high but can sometimes turn into a physical dependence over time. By crushing and snorting or smoking Wellbutrin can be very dangerous that lead to seizures.

A 12-panel drug test will not detect Wellbutrin. Instead, Wellbutrin or other antidepressants can trigger a false-positive test and often show up as amphetamines. However, blood tests can detect this substance.

Does Alcohol show up on a twelve panel drug test?

Many companies require that their employees submit to alcohol testing to maintain a healthy and productive working environment.

Nonetheless, this drug test does not automatically include alcohol testing. Instead, it’s possible to add detection for Alcohol if requested explicitly for screening. An ETG urine test can detect this substance.

Will Neurontin show up?

Neurontin is a famous brand name for Gabapentin which is an anticonvulsant drug. It is a prescription medicine for treating seizures in adults and children over the age of three. Also, it is approved to treat pain brought on by shingles.

More so, Neurontin doesn’t show up on 12 panel drug test. Despite that, there’s a specific Gabapentin urine drug test available today.

Does Tramadol show up?

Tramadol is a synthetic opioid used to treat severe pain. Tests for this substance are not common on 12-panel or most standard drug tests. But there are advanced screening panels for pain medication that check for it as well, such as urine, blood, saliva, and hair drug testing.

Today, these tests have become the most favored by most industries because they can detect medical prescription drug abuse. While it’s a good thing to reveal these substances, it’s equally important to make sure that every organization knows what it has to test. Not all prescription drugs appear in a standard 12 panel drug test. Some medications are only detectable through specific panel tests or by specially requested drug screen tests.

If you’re looking for affordable yet superior quality drug testing supplies, then take a look at Ovus Medical’s 12 panel drug tests now!

How Long Does Acid Stay in Your System?

According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, over 27 million people in the United States used acid at some point in their lives. While people use acid for many reasons, there have long been rumors on its long-term effects to stay in the body. How long does acid stay in your system? Read on to find out.

Acid is known scientifically as lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD). It is an illicit synthetic substance with hallucinogenic properties that cause dizziness and visual hallucinations. The drug is available as a capsule or liquid (applied to blotter paper) to consume orally.

But how long does acid stay in your system? Below is a guide that can help you out.

Side Effects of LSD: What Does Acid Do To Your Body?

People often use LSD for a variety of reasons. LSD is commonly used for recreational and social purposes, while others also use it for spiritual causes, artistic inspiration, and therapeutic purposes.

However, the effects of LSD are very unpredictable. A bad trip on acid can be very psychedelic, causing one to feel out of time and unable to identify oneself. People who are under the influence of acid are usually suffering from the following side effects or withdrawal symptoms:

  • Despair
  • Depression
  • Confusion
  • Intense fear
  • Flashbacks
  • Enhanced anxiety
  • Concentration problems
  • Increased blood pressure and heart rate
  • High body temperature and sweating
  • Dehydration
  • Thoughts of suicide
  • Risk to personal safety

Please note that an individual’s experience may vary depending on the amount taken or factors such as the person’s mood, personality, or environment in which they consume it.


When Do You Start Feeling The Effects?

Typically, LSD is sold as a capsule or liquid packaged in small bottles or added directly to blotter paper, sugar cubes, and gelatin squares. Generally, most consume it orally, but some apply a drop itself into the eye.

The first time you ingest the drug, it takes 20 minutes to 2 hours to start feeling its effects. Upon onset, it takes about 35 minutes for the results to peak.

How Long Does Acid Stay in Your System?

For years, the belief was that acid would stay in the spinal cord forever after consumption. However, that belief was proven incorrect after thorough research and testing.

How long does acid stay in your system? After ingesting, LSD is absorbed by the bloodstream and distributed quickly throughout the body. Researchers have found that the substance stays in the body for up to 12 hours.

However, factors like age, metabolism, and food consumption can affect how long LSD remains in the body.



Types of Drug Tests That Can Detect Acid

The following are the most common types of drug test used to detect acid in the body:

Blood Tests

Tests by blood are usually the most reliable way to screen for drugs, but they are generally the most invasive. LSD stays in the blood for 6 to 12 hours.

Urine Tests

Among all other drugs, LSD has one of the shortest detection times. Urine tests can detect it up to 8 hours after consumption.

Hair Tests

Hair tests can detect the presence of LSD in the body up to 90 days after its last use. However, the use of this test is the least common.

What can affect Acid detection times?

LSD stays in the body for different lengths of time, depending on the individual. Factors that influence the length of time it stays in the body include:

  • Age
  • Dosage amount
  • General health
  • Genetics
  • Liver and kidney function
  • Metabolism
  • Nutritional intake
  • Weight

Drugs that might cause false positives for acid

Several medications can cause urine drug screens for LSD to show as false positives, including:

  • Ambroxol
  • Amitril (amitriptyline)
  • Buspar (buspirone)
  • Cardizem (diltiazem)
  • Fentanyl
  • Prozac (fluoxetine)
  • Risperdal (risperidone)
  • Ritalin (methylphenidate)
  • Trandate (labetalol)
  • Verelan (verapamil)
  • Wellbutrin (bupropion)
  • Zoloft (sertraline)

How long does acid stay in your system? It depends on a lot of factors. LSD stays in the system for only a few hours after taking it, with its effects quickly wearing off. However, its devastating side effects may persist for several days, depending on the dosage, health condition, and resistance to the said substance of abuse.

Due to LSD’s short detection time, a more specialized laboratory technique is necessary to detect its presence in the body. But today, there are test kits available that are easy to use, provide fast turnaround times, and deliver reliable results for acid detection.

Do you need drug testing supplies that can test for acid accurately, safely, and hygienically? Check out Ovus Medical’s LSD Urine Test Strips now!

What Are the Cut Off Levels for Drug Testing?

Drug testing uses a cut-off level to determine the concentration of drugs and drug metabolites in your urine, blood sample, saliva, and hair. There is a safety risk if the results are equal to or above the recommended cut-off levels. If your sample is below the cut-off level, your test will show a negative result. If it is equal to or above the cut-off, your test result will be positive

What is the significance of cut-off levels?

Cut-offs in drug testing programs are important. It’s because not all positive test results mean a donor uses illicit drugs. For example, he might have taken drugs a few months before detection, and the laboratory used hair samples for testing. In this case, drugs would most likely be present, but the result would be below the cut-off.

Also, cut-offs are essential because it protects donors from false-positives. It makes it clear that while drugs may have been present because of prior exposure, the donor hasn’t used drugs recently.

 How are cut-off levels determined, and what regulatory body determines them?

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) establishes the scientific and technical guidelines for federal and non-federal workplace drug testing programs. An example of a federal agency is the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT). It requires employees and applicants to undergo drug testing. DOT only permits HHS-certified laboratories to conduct both drug testing and verification to determine the results’ accuracy.

 Are cut-off levels affected by detection times?

There are different detection times for various drugs among individuals. These depend on factors such as body weight, gender, age, or substances the person may have consumed with the drug.

Also, drugs have various windows of detection due to their degree of fat solubility. Highly fat-soluble compounds like Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) have a long half-life.

Thus, some highly fat-soluble compounds can be detected in urine up to several weeks from last use among heavy users. Benzodiazepines’ detection times vary among individuals due to their half-life.

Long-acting (up to 10 days), intermediate-acting (up to 5 days), or short-acting (up to 2 days). Other factors such as dosage, administration route, time of the last dosage, and individual differences in the drug’s interaction with other substances will affect the detection of benzodiazepine.

NCBI shows the various detection windows via urine samples for some commonly used substances.

Cut-off levels for drug testing

Drug tests vary, depending on the types of drugs tested and the types of specimens collected. Specimens can be in the form of urine, hair, saliva (oral fluid), or sweat samples.

In federally regulated programs, however, only urine samples are collected.

The five categories of the most commonly tested drugs are:

  • Amphetamines
  • Cocaine
  • Marijuana
  • Opiates
  • Phencyclidine (PCP)

Additional categories may include barbiturates, benzodiazepines, ethanol (alcohol), hydrocodone, MDMA, methadone, methaqualone, or propoxyphene.

For the evaluator, knowing the cut-off levels for drug testing can help them provide a more accurate interpretation of results.

To learn more about drug testing, visit the Ovus Medical Blog. We have a wealth of information you’ll find beneficial.


MRO for Drug Testing: What Does He Do?

When an employee undergoes drug testing, a medical review officer reviews the results. But what exactly does an MRO do? Read on to find out what an MRO is and the part he or she plays in the drug testing process.

What is an MRO for drug testing?

A Medical Review Officer is a licensed physician holding either a Doctor of Medicine (M.D.) or Doctor of Osteopathy (D.O.) degree. MROs are different from medical examiners. They are the ones who analyze the laboratory results of a drug test.

MROs are familiar with both prescribed and illegal drugs. They also know anti-drug laws and guidelines very well. MROs must also pass a nationally recognized board exam and maintain their certifications by retaking the same exam every five years.

Work Process of a Medical Review Officer

So what exactly does an MRO do when it comes to drug testing measures? Here is a step-by-step process.

Step 1: Reviewing Laboratory Results Generated

When an employee of the company has provided a sample to the drug testing lab, the lab tests it immediately. The lab then sends its findings to the MRO.

Step 1.1: If Test Result is Negative

If the test is negative, the MRO will verify the result, then send it to the employer.

Step 1.2: If Test Result is Non-Negative

If the result comes back as non-negative, the MRO will first double-check to see if it correct. If it is, the MRO has 72 hours to contact the employee.

Step 2: Interviewing the Employee

The MRO will have to talk to the employee to check if they are on any treatments or have any other medical explanations for non-negative or positive results.

Step 2.1: If the Employee Fails to Respond

The MRO will try three times to contact the employee and wait for 72 hours for him or her to respond. If there is no response, the MRO will ask the employer to tell the employee to contact the MRO. The MRO will not give the employer any specifics about the result.

Step 2.2: When the Employee Responds

The MRO will ask the employee for any medical explanations for the non-negative result, like a prescription drug. If there is a valid explanation, the MRO will classify the test as negative. If the employee doesn’t have a good reason, the MRO will report the test as positive.

Having an MRO review test results protects individuals from being wrongly accused of using illegal drugs and the employer from being sued by any employee fired for failing a drug test.

Are MROs required in all drug tests?

MROs are mandatory for drug tests for employees who have safety-related functions regulated by the Department of Transportation, as outlined in 49 CFR Part 40. MRO services are optional for those who do not fall under these regulations, though it is ideal for employers to use them.

To summarize, the MRO ensures the accuracy and integrity of drug test results and helps to confirm if the tested employee has a legitimate medical explanation if he or she has a positive drug test result. That way, employees won’t face wrongful termination, and employers won’t have to worry about facing any legal battles.


Want to know more about drug testing? Read other blog articles here at Ovus Medical.

What are Quaaludes and Why Were They Banned?

Quaalude is the trade name for methaqualone. In 1965, William H. Rorer Pharmaceuticals introduced it to the medical community as a safe barbiturate substitute to induce sleep. It was later shown to have addiction and withdrawal symptoms similar to other prescription barbiturates. 

In 1972, plenty of US doctors prescribed Quaaludes. Methaqualone was sold in capsule form or in tablet form that had a “714” imprint. They were inexpensive during the time they were legal in the United States. Quaaludes are no longer legally available in America for the last 36 years. It is now an illegal drug that goes by names like Mandies and Quack.

What are Quaaludes made of?

The main ingredient of Quaaludes is a synthetic chemical called Methaqualone. Indian researchers in 1955 formulated it in their pursuit of new antimalarials. The drug has sedative quality, but it was then thought to be non-addictive. Quaaludes were unique in that they were both a depressant and a hypnotic.


How do Quaaludes work?

Most sedatives, including alcohol and Valium, work by binding to gamma-aminobutyric acid receptors (GABAA) in the central nervous system, increasing the brain’s inhibitory signals. Quaaludes bind to a different segment of the GABAA receptor but have similar sedative effects. When GABA (neurotransmitter) receptors activity increases, your breathing and heart rate decrease. Whenever this happens, your pulse rate and blood pressure drop, too, entering a feeling of deep relaxation. 

Methaqualone was both a sedative and a hypnotic. It promotes relaxation, sleepiness, and sometimes a feeling of euphoria (happiness, calmness). They are Central Nervous System(CNS) depressants that include sedatives, tranquilizers, and hypnotics.

Why were they banned?

Doctors prescribed  quaaludes to treat insomnia and anxiety disorders. However, in 1984 the US Drug Enforcement Agency(DEA) labeled methaqualone with a Schedule 1 status, which President Ronal Reagan signed into law on the same year. This status effectively banned manufacturing, selling, and possession of methaqualone.

Abuse of legal prescriptions

By the late 1960s and 1970s, the drug became a popular recreation or party drug. At its height during the 1970s, Quaalude was the “disco biscuits” found across the US.

Quaaludes’ abuse potential soon became apparent. In 1973 the Controlled Substances Act labeled methaqualone in Schedule II. Schedule II status makes it difficult to prescribe, and it is illegal to possess without a prescription. But then the “stress clinics” that appeared across America became the easy source of prescriptions for Quaaludes.

Lemmon Pharmaceuticals, which bought the Quaaludes recipe in 1980, stopped the production of Quaaludes in 1983 due to widespread abuse, hundreds of deaths from illegal use, illegal recreational use, and resulting bad publicity. User demand for quaaludes waned, but new drugs just replaced quaaludes in the recreational niche.

Why do Substance Abusers still use them despite the consequences? 

Why continue using this substance despite the severe negative consequences?

A Quora writer who describes himself to be a part of the secret society of drug takers says this:” “The relaxation effect was so complete that the couch and your body were melding into one. It was ok because it felt so good to be totally relaxed.”

But why would you want to start using or continue using the outlawed Quaaludes after watching the 2013 movie The Wolf of Wall Street?

Drug addiction robs a user of any rational thinking. Studies on brain imaging on patients addicted to drugs show physical changes in the brain that are critical for judgment, decision-making, learning, memory, and behavior control. 

Scientists believe these changes alter how the brain works and explain why substance abusers still use drugs despite negative consequences. Additionally, substance abuse impairs a person’s ability to refrain from continued use of drugs.

Substance abuse is a disease and a social menace that is depriving nations of precious human resources. It will require social support and material resources to help those who struggle with addiction and see a chance to live meaningful alternative lives.

If you want to learn more about drugs and drug testing, visit the Ovus Medical Blog. We have a wealth of information you can benefit from.

What Causes Low Creatinine Levels in Urine Drug Test?

Do you know that standard urine drug tests also check on one’s level of creatinine concentration? Normal creatinine levels help show that the urine sample is not diluted. How about if somebody’s urine drug test results indicate low creatinine levels? Read on to know what low creatinine levels mean in urine drug tests.

What is creatinine?

Creatinine is a byproduct of muscle metabolism. It usually appears in urine in relatively constant quantities over 24 hours with the usual amount of liquid intake. Then, it is filtered out of the blood through the kidneys at a reasonably steady rate. Hence, there is a continual production of creatinine and a continual excretion of it in the urine. 

In general, limited water intake can lead to abnormally concentrated urine, resulting in elevated creatinine levels.

Conversely, a more significant than usual water intake will dilute the amount of drug in the urine sample, thus, yielding low creatinine levels.

What are the various creatinine levels?

The normal level of creatinine in urine is from 60 mg/dL to 300 mg/dL.

The Health and Human Services, Substance Abuse Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) has set the guidelines below:

Dilute urine creatinine: equal to or greater than 2.0 mg/dL and less than 20 mg/dL Most likely due to increased water or liquid intake. This can be a result of short-term water loading (flushing) in an attempt to dilute any drug below testing cut-off concentrations

Abnormally dilute urine creatinine: <2.0 mg/dL. In this case, the specimen shows a deficient creatinine value. It may be an indication that the specimen is not consistent with normal human urine.

When the urine sample is too diluted, the results are normally labeled as “inconclusive.”


What causes low creatinine levels in the urine?

Intentional and Accidental Urine Dilution

Intentional dilution of urine happens when a person purposefully alters the chemical composition of his urine sample. For example, a person is doing it intentionally if he drinks excessive amounts of water or takes diuretics to flush out the metabolites or byproducts of the drugs consumed before testing.

Adulteration is also an example of urine dilution. It involves adding water or some products like bleaching agents and detergents to the urine sample.

However, urine dilution can also be unintentional. Low creatinine levels can occur when any of the following conditions are present:

  • Muscle disease (muscle weakness, stiffness, and pain; decline in mobility)
  • Muscular dystrophy involves progressive loss of muscle mass and consequent loss of stamina
  • Poor liver function (jaundice, pale, bloodied tar-colored stool)
  • Excessive water loss
  • Low muscle mass due to malnutrition/low-meat or low-protein diet)
  • Kidney disease/stones

What do low creatinine levels mean in urine drug tests?

Getting low creatinine levels may indicate that the person tested tried to mask his urine drug test result. Moreover, he may have other health issues which he needs to address.

Summing up, establishing the creatinine levels in drug-abuse testing helps validate the urine specimen used and the testing results.

Check out Ovus Medical’s 12 panel drug test with adulterants to detect low creatinine levels.

What Are Barbiturates? Here’s A Quick Guide

Statistics from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) reveal that around 405,000 Americans aged 12 and above use barbiturates. Of this number, some 32,000 misuse barbiturates. Besides, teenagers and young adults who take barbiturates for recreational purposes are increasing in number.

Getting to know more about this substance would help us understand how they can affect your health as well as your loved ones. Here’s a quick guide.

What are barbiturates?

Barbiturates are synthetic drugs known as sedative-hypnotics with sleep-inducing and anxiety-decreasing effects. They increase a chemical’s activity in the brain called gamma amino-butyric acid (GABA). It’s a neurotransmitter facilitating communication between brain cells.

Medical practitioners prescribe these drugs to:

  • treat headaches
  • insomnia
  • seizure disorder
  • epilepsy
  • increased pressure in the skull
  • severe trauma to the skull
  • some types of convulsions

Also known as depressants, downers, or barbs, barbiturates produce effects similar to those of alcohol used as a recreational drug.

What are barbiturates made from?

Barbiturates are derivatives of barbituric acid (malonyl urea), formed from malonic acid and urea. Specifically, barbituric acid was first discovered by the German chemist Adolf von Baeyer in 1864. He combined urea (an animal waste product) with malonic acid (derived from the acid of apples).

Types of barbiturates

1. Amobarbital (Amytal)

Amobarbital was intended to treat various symptoms of insomnia and anxiety-related disorders. Researchers later discovered that its side effects outweighed its benefits. However, amobarbital is still occasionally administered or prescribed in a clinical setting.

When GABA receptors in the brain are activated with Amobarbital, the central nervous system’s signals can become sluggish or blocked.

2. Butabarbital (Butisol)

Butabarbital is used on a short-term basis to treat insomnia. It is also used to relieve anxiety, for example, before a surgical procedure. It works by slowing brain activity.

3. Phenobarbital

Phenobarbital is the oldest epilepsy medicine still in use to treat or prevent seizures. It slows down the activity of your brain and nervous system. Phenobarbital is used to treat or prevent seizures

4. Secobarbital (Seconal)

Secobarbital is used for a short time to treat insomnia or as a sedative before surgery.

5. Butalbital/acetaminophen/caffeine (Esgic, Fioricet)

Butalbital/acetaminophen/caffeine is a combination medication used to treat tension headaches.

What are the side effects of barbiturates?

Since these substances are considered central nervous system depressants, they cause psychological changes in mood, such as euphoria, depression, or reduced inhibition. Such changes are the main reason why barbiturates are often abused.

Aside from those given above, other side effects of barbiturates include the following:

  • abdominal pain
  • confusion
  •  dizziness
  • Headache
  •  impaired judgment
  • light headedness
  • nausea
  •  slurred speech
  •  vomiting

Meanwhile, high doses of barbiturates can cause hostility, anxiety, body ataxia, slurred speech, paranoia, and suicidal thoughts.

Long-term use of barbiturates may result in the following effects:

  1. Depression, intense tiredness, and extreme mood swings
  2. Delirium and seizure, especially following a sudden withdrawal
  3. Chronic intoxication, aggressive behavior, impaired memory, judgment and coordination, and insomnia


Why is testing necessary?

Barbiturates are addictive. Consequently, these drugs often get into illegal use and abuse throughout the United States. Also, long-term association with barbiturates can cause addiction and severe withdrawal symptoms.

Testing for barbiturate can help your loved ones or your employees to prevent and detect addiction with the drug at the earliest time. Check out Ovus Medical’s Barbiturate test strips.

How Long Does Alcohol Stay in Your Urine?

Alcohol is one of the most popular drugs in the world. Since it’s not yet considered a controlled substance, people consume it anytime and anywhere. 

But because employers know that working people (especially those in safety-sensitive jobs) who are under the influence of alcohol can threaten their own lives and others, they now include urine alcohol testing in their drug testing programs. 

The question is – how long does alcohol stay in your urine? Read on to find out.

How Long Does Alcohol Stay in the Body?

Once taken, the tongue and the mouth’s mucosal lining directly absorb a small amount of alcohol.  

Then, once in the stomach, the tissues lining the stomach and small intestines process it and transports it to other body organs through the bloodstream.

If you drank alcohol on an empty stomach, you’d feel intoxicated faster. It’s because food either absorbs the alcohol or prevents it from coming into contact with the stomach lining.

The liver metabolizes one standard drink per hour for men. So if you’re a man who just consumed five alcoholic beverages, alcohol will leave your body in about five hours.

What is a standard drink?

standard drink comes in the form of the following:

  • 12 fl oz of regular beer.
  • 8-9 fl oz of malt liquor.
  • 5 fl oz of wine.
  • 1.5 fl oz shot of distilled spirits (gin, rum, tequila, vodka, whiskey).

Other factors influence the rate of alcohol breakdown in the body. These are:

  • Weight
  • Age
  • Metabolism
  • Gender
  • Amount of food eaten
  • Type and strength of the alcoholic beverage
  • Medications that are taken before drinking alcohol


Why use urine for testing alcohol?

Alcohol blood tests can detect the substance for up to six hours. On the other hand, breathalyzers and saliva tests can detect alcohol anywhere from 12-24 hours.

On the other hand, an alcohol urine test looks for the ethanol metabolite Ethyl Glucuronide or EtG. It’s because EtG stays in the body for up to 80 hours or three days.

Will drinking plenty of water or coffee sober you up?

No, doing these things won’t speed up the elimination of alcohol in the body. Even sleeping longer or taking a shower won’t do. Yes, drinking coffee or lots of water and taking a cold shower can make you feel refreshed and awake. However, the body eliminates alcohol naturally through an enzyme called Alcohol Dehydrogenase produced by the liver.

But even if you’re already sober, EtG will remain in your body. So if you’re scheduled for an alcohol test, your best bet would be to stay away from any alcoholic drinks for three days or more.

It is said that UA drug testing cups sometimes show false positives. Why does this happen?

Admittedly, false positives can happen if:

  • you recently ate plenty of foods poured with alcohol (baked Alaska, flambes)
  • used mouthwashes or breath mints before the test
  • took a cough syrup like Nyquil

This is why you should inform the evaluator of any medicines you took or food you ate before the alcohol drug test. Another thing to keep in mind is the cutoff levels of different drugs. 

Yes, taking Panadeine Forte for your headache might give you positive test results for opiates. However, the test will also show that the concentration is within the therapeutic range. This means you are not misusing opiates.

So how long does alcohol stay in your urine? Generally up to 80 hours depending on your age, gender, and other factors.

Would you like to know more about this topic? Visit the Ovus Medical Blog. We have plenty of information you can benefit from.

What is the Drug Molly?

3,4-MethyleneDioxyMethAmphetamine, also known as MDMA and Molly, is the world’s most popular synthetic drug of all time. This psychoactive drug makes you friendlier, euphoric, and feel empathetic towards others. That’s why MDMA became a famous party drug among young adults. It makes you feel so alive, energetic, and super friendly – feelings that many perceive as musts to enjoy the party.

What is the drug Molly? 

No, “Molly” isn’t the name of MDMA’s inventor. The name came from “molecular,” which is how this drug was originally distributed – in powder or crystal form. 

Today, it comes in the form of capsules and funny-looking tablets. Sometimes, it’s also available in its liquid form.

Molly is just one of MDMA’s nicknames. Users also call it ecstasy, Adam, hug drug, lover’s speed, STP, beans, disco biscuit, among others.

It’s a Schedule I substance which means it has a high chance of being abused but has no FDA-approved medical use.

Although most users typically swallow Molly, some smoke, snort, or inject this illegal drug.

How does Molly work?

Ecstasy triggers three neurotransmitters in your brain: Dopamine, Noradrenaline, and Serotonin. The first ups your energy level, the second increases your heart rate, while the third improves your mood, appetite for food, and sex.

The thing is – Molly mimics these neurotransmitters, giving you that enhanced experience most users love. It makes you feel so good and happy, and you see everyone as your friend.

Side Effects of Molly

When used as directed, MDMA can be a helpful drug. But when used for recreation or as a party drug, you must be very careful. 

For one, MDMA disrupts the sleep cycle, so you’ll feel sleepless after taking it. You might feel your teeth clenching involuntarily, even when you’re wide awake. Another side effect is being too amiable and friendly, even to strangers. Now, this can lead to unsafe sex or promiscuity.

MDMA’s real danger is not in the substance itself. In fact, Dr. Alexander Shulgin, the spiritual father of psychedelics, recreated MDMA for therapeutic purposes.

It’s when someone contaminates it with other drugs like cocaine or ketamine or mixed with chemicals used for bath salts that can cause adverse effects like:

  • High blood pressure
  • Panic attacks
  • Faintness
  • Involuntary jaw clenching
  • Nausea
  • Death

According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, using Molly in places where there’s long, vigorous physical activity in warm environments can lead to molly’s most acute side effects – a significant increase in body temperature or hyperthermia. This can also cause dehydration.

However, drinking plenty of water and sports drinks is not the solution in this situation. Molly causes the body to retain water, so there’s a risk of electrolyte imbalance or brain swelling.

This may be the reason why fatality reports in recent years have tended to cluster at events such as raves and electronic dance music festivals.

Is there a need to test for MDMA in the workplace?

Most companies that do drug testing in the workplace now include molly screens. This drug, as mentioned earlier, affects a person’s perception and behavior. So employers are wary that their employees’ productivity and safety might be affected by a worker who’s still experiencing a comedown because he took MDMA the night before.

Does your workplace need reliable but affordably-priced MDMA drug tests? Then check out Ovus Medical’s 101213, and 14 drug testing cups which include MDMA. Or purchase our MDMA Testing Strips

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Can You Test for Kratom?

Kratom is a tree with the scientific name Mitragyna Speciosa. Its leaves contain compounds that have mind altering effects. Although it is not currently an illegal substance, long-term use can lead to dependence and abuse. But, can you test for Kratom? Read on.

What is Kratom?

Kratom is an evergreen tropical tree native to Thailand and other Southeast Asian countries. This coffee species is best grown in hot, too muggy habitats.

Users eat the fresh leaves and crush and brew the dried ones. One unusual method of ingesting Kratom is called toss and wash. Users take a spoon full of the powder and put it in their mouth. They then wash that down with water or juice. Fast and easy!

There are two main active components in the leaves of Kratom: mitragynine and 7-hydroxymitragynine. These substances are responsible for Kratom’s psychoactive effects. Once they reach the brain, they influence mood and anxiety.

The physiological effects are similar to sedatives when consumed in high doses and stimulants when consumed in low amounts. Although it is not an opioid, it acts on the same brain receptors as opioids. Kratom’s effects intensify if someone takes it on an empty stomach.

Kratom street names include:

  • Biak
  • Ketum
  • Kakuam
  • Kratho
  • Ithang
  • Thom

Kratom is currently legal as sold in gas stations, convenience stores, head shops, and paraphernalia shops in most US parts. People can also order Kratom over the Internet with the following names.

Brand Names of Kratom include but not limited to:

  • Bali Halus
  • Club 13
  • Divinity Kratom
  • Edens Ethnos Kratom
  • Experience Kratom
  • Feng Shui Herbals
  • Golden Reserve Extract
  • Green Vein Borneo
  • Kratom Infusion
  • Kratom Kaps
  • Kratom Tea

Because it is legal and plant-based, they assume it is safe. However, it is not.The FDA is concerned that Kratom seems to have properties that predispose users to addiction, abuse, and dependence.

Why People Use Kratom

Traditionally, manual laborers, farmers, and fishers regularly used this herbal plant to relieve fatigue and manage pain.  For centuries, they used Kratom in their socio-religious ceremonies as a source of spiritual transcendence to uplift their spirits.

However, modern science proved Kratom as an effective plant-based libido enhancer. It is because of its aphrodisiac properties.

Pain relief is the principal reason why people use Kratom. Its alkaloid components are responsible for the action. When ingested or consumed, kratom leaves produce complex dose-dependent stimulant and analgesic effects. Kratom’s mood-boosting properties helped users stop using other drugs, specifically opiates. Some use it to alleviate symptoms of morphine and ethanol withdrawal.

Moreover, it works as an antidepressant and a hunger suppressant.

Commonly reported benefits according to a review by Singh, et al include:

  • euphoria
  • a sense of wellbeing
  • relaxation
  • enhanced sociability
  • more energy
  • analgesia
  • sensory enhancement
  • a warm and tingly feeling

Side Effects of Kratom

Kratom has varying effects on people based on dosage amounts. Long-term effects can be unpleasant and potentially life-threatening.

Side effects include:

  • agitation
  • tachycardia
  • drowsiness
  • vomiting
  • confusion
  • sensitivity to sunburn
  • nausea
  • itching
  • sweating
  • dry mouth
  • constipation
  • increased urination
  • loss of appetite

Graveside effects include:

  • seizures
  • respiratory and cardiac arrest
  • Symptoms of psychosis in some users
  • Liver damage
  • addiction

How long does Kratom stay in the body?

Thus far, it would take 24 hours to eliminate 50% of the Kratom in the body based on various research conducted.

Usually, it would take just over five days for Kratom to leave the system. However, other factors would come into play that may affect elimination time.

Factors may include:

  • Age
  • Genetics
  • Body fat
  • Food and water intake

Can you test for Kratom?

One of the biggest reasons people chose Kratom over other drugs is their belief that it will not show up on a drug test. Additionally, since Kratom is not yet a controlled substance, it is not part of the routines of standard drug testing. Hence, it does not show up. However, some Kratom alkaloids are now identified on specific drug tests using urine or blood samples.

Ovus Medical’s Kratom urine drug test strips are specifically created and designed to check for Kratom alkaloids.

Can you test for Kratom? Yes, it is possible! Drug tests for Kratom are now available. Use it to your advantage.

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What Happens If You Fail a Random Drug Test?

It’s a Manic Monday! You still feel light-headed from last night’s booze party. As you drive yourself to work, you silently wish your supervisor won’t ask you to take your sunglasses off. But luck against luck, he tells you you’ll have a random drug test today the moment you enter your office.

So you get your mobile phone to search for your rights. Can you be randomly drug tested? Can you refuse? What will happen if you fail a random drug test?

Can Your Employer Random Drug Test You?

Yes, he can, if he has a well-documented drug testing policy in place. He should follow your state’s guidelines on providing notice and proper procedures for avoiding discrimination and inaccurate sampling. 

Can Your Company Test You Without Warning?

Try to remember the day you applied for your job. Were you informed that passing a drug test is a requirement for employment? And that it conducts random drug tests periodically?

If yes, then the company isn’t random drug testing you without warning. From day one, you knew such a test could happen anytime to any employee.

And yes, notices for random drug tests are given the same day. There’s no need to wonder why your superior only informed you that you’d be undergoing the test today.

Can You Refuse to be Drug Tested?

Yes, you can refuse a drug test, primarily because no federal laws govern such a procedure. That is if you’re working in a non-safety sensitive job in a private company. 

However, the consequences might not be in your favor. Your superior can suspend you for disobedience, or worse, fire you. 

But if you’re working in the trucking, railroad, aviation, mass transportation, and similar industries, you can’t refuse. It’s because people’s safety can be at risk if you’re under the influence.



What Happens If You Fail a Random Drug Test?

Let’s assume you agreed to do the test. You don’t smell of alcohol, anyway. Plus, you’ve read somewhere that the effects of alcohol only last about three hours. So what gives?

EtG, the metabolite of alcohol, is detectable in drug tests for up to 80 hours. So you will test positive for the substance if you drank the night before.

So what happens?

When you fail a drug test, your employer can do the following:

  1. Recommend you for EAP
  2. Disqualify you for promotion
  3. Fire you

Recommend You for EAP

If your company has an Employee Assistance Program, then you’re in luck. It’s a free work-based program that provides private evaluation, short-term counseling, referrals, and follow-up services for employees undergoing personal or work-related issues like you. Some companies even extend assistance to the families of their employees enlisted in this program.

Disqualify You for Promotion

Yes, your employer can do so, but not if you agree to undergo a rehabilitation program. It’s because the Family and Medical Leave Act prevents employers from retaliating against workers who request FMLA leave. So if you do fail a drug test, take advantage of this leave not only to get that long-desired promotion but, more importantly, lead a new life.

Fire You

Your employer can fire you if, after testing positive, you refuse to undergo the rehabilitation program. If you agree to go through the program but don’t complete it, he can also terminate you, following the authorities’ guidelines.

What happens if you fail a drug test? Your employer can recommend you for rehab, deny you for promotion, or terminate you.

Would you like to learn more about drug testing in the workplace? Visit the Ovus Medical Blog. We have a lot of information on this topic you can benefit from.

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