How Long Should a Drug Test Take?

Aug 23, 2017 0 Comments in Research, urine drug testing by
How Long Should a Drug Test Take?

Standard Length of Time For A Drug Test

Depending on the test and the needs of the agency requesting the results, it can take different amounts of time to gain the findings from a drug test. The drugs used, the reasons for the test, and many other variables can all change the amount of time an outpatient rehab center, an employer, or another agency will need to wait for a drug test.

However, at National Labs, we can work with you to ensure the fastest results possible. Just let us know what you need, and we can create a customized testing schedule to fit your requirements.

If You’re Interested In Working With Us, Call: 877-304-5183

Typical Drug Testing Wait Times

Urine testing is the most commonly utilized option for drug testing. Mass spectrometry is a delicate testing option, and although it provides some of the quickest and most accurate results, it can take time to be certain. Many drug testing companies will promise to provide you with results in a few days. Negative tests usually come back more quickly, while positive test results may take more time and, in some cases, can take as long as a week.

However, National Labs guarantees initial results in just 24 hours. Some of our more advanced tests, such as LCMS confirmation tests, can require slightly more time for results, usually between 24 and 48 hours, and only occasionally taking up to 72. This allows most agencies, businesses, and treatment centers (like opiate rehab and alcohol treatment centers) to receive test results quickly enough to take action, especially when all they require is the initial findings of a positive or negative result.

What If I Need Results Sooner?

Drug testing results sometimes do need to come sooner. In certain cases, an employer who drug tests an employee needs to know as quickly as possible if the employee was using, especially in high-profile, high-stress, or medical jobs. In addition, according to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, individuals in opiate detox need to be drug tested for medication monitoring, and these results should come back as quickly as possible to ensure patients are not misusing their treatment medications. Sometimes, even a 24-hour turnaround just isn’t enough.

When this is the case, many drug testing agencies will work with the client directly to get results as soon as possible. At National Labs, we provide custom options for drug screenings, especially when a client is in a unique situation and requires results as soon as possible.

Why Does It Take So Long?

There are a number of reasons why drug testing can take anywhere from 24 hours to 7 days to get results.

  • There are many types of drugs that employers, treatment centers, and other clients look for when it comes to testing. When this is the case, drug screen analysts must look for many different factors in a sample, which can slow down the process.
  • There are several ways in which a urine sample can be altered in order to attempt to create a false negative. As such, our team performs adulteration testing, and although it can take longer, it minimizes the chances of a person altering their sample to reflect a false negative test.
  • This is intricate work. However, there are many innovations in the world of drug testing every year that make tests more accurate, more intelligent, and more likely to return quick results.

As technicians and analysts, we strive to give our clients feedback that is both quick and accurate. We are always happy to discuss the different needs of our clients when it comes to drug testing.

Let Us Help You Get the Results You Need: 877-304-5183

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