Articles Tagged with urine alcohol test

EtG (Ethyl Glucuronide) is a common urine test used by Courts to verify whether an individual on bond or probation has used alcohol in the past 3 to 5 days.  EtG testing is usually performed at an outside agency which the Court deems reliable (such as JAMS, NOVA, DOTS, etc.).  It is favored in many Courts in lieu of a breathalyzer test based upon how far back it can detect alcohol.  A breathalyzer test or a blood test may only be able to detect alcohol for hours based upon the body’s rapid elimination of alcohol from the body. Alcohol is eliminated from the body at a rate of approximately 1 drink per hour.

The EtG test is used to document abstinence from alcohol, to detect relapse, and to screen for drinking problems.   Although the EtG test is deemed to be very reliable, there are instances of false positive tests due to a person’s exposure (as opposed to consumption) to alcohol through household cleaning and personal hygiene products.  Incidental exposure to vanilla extract can also produce EtG concentrations in excess of 100 ng/ml.   Testing that has occurred on cleaning, personal hygiene, and food products to determine incidental or unintentional exposure to alcohol has never produced a positive EtG level greater than 500 ng/ml, and this is sometimes used as a cut off level for Courts.
EtG can also be tested in hair and nails, with a window of detection of 3 months.  The bleaching of hair and chlorine exposure may reduce or eliminate EtG presence in hair.  However, EtG urine testing is far more commonly used by Courts.
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