What to Look for When Reading a Drug Test Cup?

Employee agreement and consent to drug and/or alcohol testing.

A very popular way to test for drugs is with drug test cups. Pre-employment screenings, compliance assessments, and home drug abuse prevention all often require urine drug tests. These are the most important things to know about our 5-panel, 10-panel, and 12-panel drug tests.

The reading of a drug test

Following the selection of the appropriate urine screening cup, you can proceed to testing and interpreting results. It is important to follow the appropriate steps in collecting and interpreting specimens in order to accurately determine the test result. To do this, you must understand the components of the test and how each one is interpreted. For more information, visit idrugscreen.com.

1. Choose a control region and a test region

The control regions (C) in each panel will be marked at the top, along with the test regions (T) specific to each drug. Test Region indicates whether the drug you are testing for is present while Control Region indicates whether the test is functioning properly.

In the control region, or the C mark, there should be a line following the sample. Once you have obtained a sample, wait 10 minutes before administering the test and discard the first one if the Control line does not appear.

2. Gather a sample

An advanced flat panel urine drug test cup with adulterants like the 12 Panel DrugConfirm Advanced Flat Panel Urine Drug Test Cup with Adulterants is the most common choice. Multiple substances can be detected by a multi-drug test kit at once, so it can save time. It is vital that the person being tested urinates into the appropriate volume of the sample cup. Results may not be accurate if the sample is too small.

3. Take five minutes to wait

Unlike mouth swab drug tests, instant urine drug tests (cups and dip cards) provide results within minutes of collecting a specimen (urine). The results of a drug test should not be read more than 10 minutes after the sample is taken. If results are read more than 10 minutes later, they might not be accurate.

Results of positive drug tests

Positive drug test results occur when no lines appear in the Test Region (T) but colored lines appear in the Control Region (C). Drug tests that are positive for drugs indicate a positive result in the urine test. An employee, parolee, student, etc. who abuses illicit drugs may be subject to disciplinary action once a positive drug test result is obtained.

Detecting the temperature of a drug test strip

The urine test cup usually comes with a temperature strip that enables it to detect anomalies in the specimen. Strips are also available separately for testing urine temperature by third-party collectors (TPA).

The temperature of urine at which a drug test can be conducted ranges between 32–38 °C (90–100 °F). It is possible for urine to contain substances (such as water) that are adulterated by drugs when the drug test temperature is out of range. Once again, TPAs are best able to understand the results of drug tests.

Temperature of urine is important

Urine samples are often measured by medical staff for temperature. Even if a sample specimen seems authentic and unadulterated, its appearance will not suffice to verify its authenticity. Although it may appear as though the sample is genuine, the donor may have snuck a urine sample from another person into the facility. Furthermore, the appearance of the sample may not indicate whether the donor washed the specimen with soap, water, or another substance to alter the results. In order to determine whether the samples have been tampered with, the medical personnel use an adulterant test using temperature.

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