Did I get a false positive on my drug test?
- 0Jan 22, '13 by WantAccel.BSNI'm so, so scared. I went in for a pre-employment drug test today, and there was something wrong with the "instant results." They had to send my results to the lab, and they said this could potentially delay my start date. My urine looked dilute to me, but I really didn't have that much to drink beforehand--about 16 oz of juice and about 8 oz of coffee in the 2 hours before the test. I also took a bunch of vitamins, as I do every day. I reported my prescription drugs, but did not report these vitamins because the form only seemed to be asking about prescription drugs. I took a drug test a year ago and did all the same things and didn't have a problem, so for the life of me I can't understand why it's different this time. They weren't able to tell me why they had to send the results to the lab (the lady said the machine doesn't tell them).
Has this ever happened to anyone before? In the last month, I've been around people that have been smoking pot a couple of times, but I made a serious effort to avoid inhaling anything--going so far as to cover my face with my shirt when I could smell anything. I don't judge my friends for smoking, but it's not something I partake in because I know the severity of the consequences. I was worried enough about that that I just went to the local drug store and got an over the counter test that the pharmacist recommended--all negative (about 4 hours after the pre-employment screen), but my urine was noticeably darker than it was at the pre-employment screen. I am so upset right now! I probably won't hear anything from the lab for at least a couple of days, so any information anyone could give me would be much appreciated.
- 0Jan 22, '13 by SleeepyRNIf you know you have not taken anything, then there is no problem. If your prescription drugs are controlled substances, then you will have to wait for them to call you to give them a script number. I've never tested positive for marijuana, and I'm around it all the time. Maybe they were suspicious at how dilute your urine was? 16 oz of juice and coffee would certainly dilute MY urine. I'd pee like crazy, but that's me. I wouldn't worry so much if you know you did nothing wrong
- 0Jan 22, '13 by WantAccel.BSNThat, Sirius. I *know* I did nothing wrong, but it still really bothers me particularly because I've read about employers failing people for results being too dilute. I just don't want to lose this job or have my start date significantly delayed (it'll be delayed by at least 2 weeks if I have to retest). It seems so unfair. Their instructions said to drink no more than one to two 8 oz glasses in the hour before the test, so I thought what I drank wouldn't be problematic. My prescriptions aren't controlled--just an antidepressant and birth control, both of which I reported. I'm a worrier anyway, so I'm kinda freaking out right about now...
- 0Jan 23, '13 by Klsana00The machine will read your Specific Gravity of your urine. If it is too dilute they will send out HOWEVER they will most likely require a second sample. I would avoid the pot smoke though. The explaination that you are positive from second hand smoke wont cut it so why risk it.
- 0Jan 24, '13 by SleeepyRNQuote from WantAccel.BSNI understand. I'm a worry wart sometimes. Good luck, I hope nothing is significantly delayed. I agree, that would stink.That, Sirius. I *know* I did nothing wrong, but it still really bothers me particularly because I've read about employers failing people for results being too dilute. I just don't want to lose this job or have my start date significantly delayed (it'll be delayed by at least 2 weeks if I have to retest). It seems so unfair. Their instructions said to drink no more than one to two 8 oz glasses in the hour before the test, so I thought what I drank wouldn't be problematic. My prescriptions aren't controlled--just an antidepressant and birth control, both of which I reported. I'm a worrier anyway, so I'm kinda freaking out right about now...
- 0Jan 24, '13 by Meriwhen, ASN, BSN, RN Senior ModeratorI had something similar happen...I was told that there was a problem with my results because I did not submit my sample on time. Normally failure to test on time is treated the same as a positive test. But I did test on time and fortunately for me, I had saved my paperwork which clearly indicated the date and time of submission, as well as being signed by the lab technician who collected it. I was stressed, and yes, I was wondering if it was a false positive.
Apparently my urine somehow got lost in the shuffle and didn't get sent out for 3 days...funny thing was that the lab tried to blame the tech, and the tech tried to blame the lab. I never learned what the "problem" with the results was--whether it was a false positive or if it was just the timing issue--but I was allowed to retest. Second retest came back negative.
OP: like others said, if you didn't do anything illegal, then try not to stress over it too much--sometimes these things happen. It may not have been your urine that was the problem: it could have been the instant test itself. Or there's something they want to clear up with the lab, which would bring back more accurate results than a urine dip. If there is an issue, trust me, they will let you know.
Though I will impart 3 pieces of advice:
1. Next UDS, disclose EVERYTHING you take: prescriptions, OTCs, herbals, vitamins, everything. Disclose as far back as they tell you to; if they don't set a timeframe, go back at least a week.
2. Save any paperwork until you receive your official UDS results.
3. Rethink hanging around with people who smoke MJ. As someone who works in chemical dependency, you'd be surprised how many patients try to sell the "secondhand smoke" excuse to explain away their own hot sample. And that excuse never flies, especially once we pull up an exact THC level.
That should give you an idea as to how well that explanation--even if you are truly innocent--would go over with your employer.