Hair testing is the most accurate and effective method of detecting the presence of drugs of abuse. Using a small sample of hair cut at the scalp, hair analysis evaluates the amount of drug metabolites embedded inside the hair shaft.
The primary advantage of hair testing is the more extended history of drug use it provides in comparison to standard urine tests. A urine sample provides only a 2-3 day history of drug use, except for marijuana which may be detected for a slightly longer period of time. After the 2-3 day period, a urine donor will test negative and slip through the screening process.
Using hair samples, the only time limitation for detecting drug usage is imposed by the length of the donor’s hair. Each ½ inch of head hair provides a 30-day history of drug use. The standard for the industry is to test 1.5 inches, which provides a 90-day history of the donor’s drug use. The analysis of such a sample can be segmented into 30, 60, and 90-day periods.
If no head hair is available, body hair can be used. However, it is important to note that body hair cannot be used for a segmented analysis, and may demonstrate drug use as long as 12 months prior to the test.
Bleaches, shampoos and external contaminants (i.e. marijuana smoke) have no known impact on test results.
Our standard hair panel tests for use of the following:
- Amphetamines (Methamphetamines and Ecstasy)
- Cocaine (Cocaine, Benzoylecgonine, Cocaethylene, Norcocaine)
- Opiates (Codeine, Morphine & 6-MAM (Heroin metabolite)
- Phencyclidine (PCP)
- Marijuana (Carboxy-THC)
For an additional cost, the following opiates can be added to the panel:
- Oxycodone (Oxycontin, Percodan/Percoset)
- Hydrocodone (Vicodin, Lortab/Lorcet)
- Hydromorphone (Dilaudid)