False Positives on Drug Tests, page 145

False Positives Forum

This forum is intended to help those who Do NOT Abuse Drugs. We do NOT support the illegal use of any substance. If you have experience with false positives, share your experience. What would you tell someone about drug testing and false positives? Please remember that we do not give medical or legal advice.

Subj: Loperamide
Date: 8/10/2011
Hi, my son was taking Imodium AD caplets for diarrhea. Would the loperamide have any effect on a drug test? Thank you.


AskDocWeb: No, we don’t believe so and Imodium has not been reported to cause any problems with urine drug testing.

Subj: Sulfame trimotheprim
Date: 8/11/2011
i tested possitive today at probation is a 5 panel dipstick test. i take the acne medicine sulfame trimotheprim. could that result in a false possitive?


AskDocWeb: While some antibiotics have shown up as positive on urine drug tests this one has not been identified as one of them. Trimethoprim/sulfamethoxazole or Co-trimoxazole is a sulfonamide antibiotic. It’s a combination of one part trimethoprim with five parts sulfamethoxazole, used in the treatment of a variety of bacterial infections.

Subj: Atrovent and albuterol inhalers
Date: 8/11/2011
I have codp and emphysema, i use atrovent and albuterol inhalers. I use them way more than prescribed because of my lung pain and breathing problems. It now seems to have caused me to fail a drug test for alcohol? Why is this?


AskDocWeb: Was the test a breathalyzer or urine test? Asthma inhalers sometimes contain 30 percent or more alcohol that isn’t absorbed into the bloodstream but is used as a propellant, which can cause a false positive on a breathalyzer. Albuterol, the active ingredient in many asthma inhalers, also contains a methyl group and can trigger a positive reading from a breath alcohol analyzer.

Subj: Career on the line
Date: 8/11/2011
I tested positive on a urine drug screen gs/ms for benzos which I knew would happen because I had taken a restoril and valerian root that morning before going to bed (I work nights) however when the breakdown came in the restoril was not shown but Xanax 89ng/ml and Ativan at 89ng/ml with both cutlets being 300/80 I had not taken either one of those drugs. Never Xanax last Ativan was may 2007. I also showed acetaminophen metabolites, ibuprofen metabolites and diphenhydramine and metabolites that were not quantitated. I am told that Xanax and Ativan are different metabolites than any other benzos but I know I did not take these at all. Any information you can help me with on this would be appreciated greatly. Career on the line here.


AskDocWeb: According to the Blue Grass Drug Screen company, Restoril (Temazepam) may test positive for benzodiazepines but these are typically eliminated by the GC/MS test. With so many inconsistencies it makes us wonder if the sample tested was yours or someone else’s. You may want to verify their chain of custody procedures or at least find out if you can get retested.

Subj: Tested positive for Barbiturates
Date: 8/13/2011
My dad has tested positive for Barbiturates. Here is a list of medications he has taken in the past few weeks: Advair Diskus, AmLODIPine Besylate, Combivent, Furosemide, Gemfibrozil, Hydrochlorothiazide, Primatene Mist, Pro Air HFA, Simvastatin & Spiriva. Can any of these meds have caused a false positive or any of them combined?


AskDocWeb: Hi Kim, sorry to hear about your dad. None of the drugs you list have been associated with false positives for barbiturates on urine drug screens. However, that doesn’t rule out the possibility that it may be a false positive. To do that he needs to get a GC/MS confirmation test.

Subj: Muffins with poppy seeds
Date: 8/15/2011
there is no way a human can eat enough muffins with poppy seeds to fail a drug test. Get real doc.


AskDocWeb: You might want to check your references on that belief, which contradicts the American Medical Association, forensic scientists, drug manufacturers like Merck, the New York State Office of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Services, and others. See Poppy Seeds. This was also confirmed by the popular television show Myth Busters.

Subj: Tested positive for marijuana
Date: 8/17/2011
I have just recently been told I tested positive for marijuana (37ng/ml). In the last six weeks I have spent three days in the hospital trying to pass a kidney stone with all of the anti-emetics and pain medication involved. Two days after finally passing it, I underwent a double inguinal hernia repair with all of the medications related to that including one to calm me down after I awoke in a rather combative mood. I have been taking 3-6 200 mg ibuprophen daily since the surgery. What are the chances any or all of these have resulted in a false positive? I am very concerned because I have NOT imbibed and the surgery technology program I am almost finished with is threatening to drop me from the program.


AskDocWeb: The chances of a false positive go up with the number of drugs taken. Fortunately the GC/MS confirmation test is very good at identifying exactly what is in your system. The confirmation test is the only way we know of to clear up the appearance of guilt caused by a false positive.

Subj: Ranitadine or omeprazole?
Date: 8/17/2011
Can ranitadine or omeprazole cause a positive result for amphetemines?


AskDocWeb: There are several sources that say Ranitidine might test positive for amphetamines; New York State Office of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Services, Oregon State University, and the Blue Grass Drug Screen, Inc. drug testing company.

Subj: Negative for methadone
Date: 8/17/2011
I have been taking methodone for about 5 years now for my chronic leg nerve pain and fibermylgia and it is the only thing that help me to live day to day because of the pain. But something I can’t explain happened and I don’t know what to say to my doctor because I am telling the true! He had me go in for my yearly drug screen to make sure I was not abusing or selling like alot of people do now days which makes it hard for the ones that are taking it right and I come out negative no methodone in my system at all! I could not believe it I didn’t know what to say I was shocked so as my doctor for years he said lets just take another one. So I was like ok that is no problem. I went and took another one and very 100% sure I would have no problems. So I went to the doctors a week later and he said it was neg. again! I was shocked crying not understanding and feeling like he doesn’t believe me and embarrassed because we had trust in each other for all these years and I could not explain what was going on. So If you could give me any information or suggestions. Thank You,


AskDocWeb: Methadone goes through your system pretty fast. Most of it is out of your system in less than 24 hours. If the dose was too low your sample may not have the required concentration to show up on the test. Another possibility is that your body may be metabolizing the drug faster than the average patient.

If you have to get another doctor make sure you get your lab records from the old one. There are reports of some doctors using this as an excuse to get rid of patients they no longer want to see. This was discovered through lab records and having another doctor find out that the previous doctor was not testing for that med. Be aware that it is expensive to test for levels lower than 300ng/ml and that testing may not always be done.

Subj: Tested positive for meth
Date: 8/18/2011
I recently tested positive for meth when I went to take a urine test, I dont do any drugs I dont even smoke. Come to find out I did take four equate acid reducers that contain the ingredient ranitidine the day before which caused the bad reading. Could that be true?


AskDocWeb: According to the people who make the drug testing kits yes, ranitidine may cause a false positive for methamphetamines.

Subj: False positive for oxymorphone?
Date: 8/18/2011
My husband currentky takes suboxone after going to a paincare center and given high doses of morphine for severe migraines. He went to the doc and asked to be taken off the morphine because he didn”t like what it was doing to him. He was put on suboxone about two months. Because it’s a paincare center he is drug tested. This last week his doctor said his ua came back positive for oxymorphone and he has absolutely not taken any medications other than the suboxone. He does have trouble sleeping and takes melatonin at bedtime, ibupruphron or tyelenol as needed. He was also prescribed trazadone to help him sleep but doesnt take it because it makes him feel like crap and has not taken it in about two weeks. Is it possible that anyone of these things in combination with the suboxone or each other could provide a false positive for oxymorphone? Or is it possible the suboxone itself breaks down into that?


AskDocWeb: Thanks for your question Casey. The research required to answer it resulted in suboxone being added to the list for false positives.

The new reference is the result of research at the Umass Memorial Medical Center, Department of Hospital Laboratories in Worcester, MA. Published in the American Association for Clinical Chemistry. Here’s their quote:

“It is important that users of this methodology be aware of the cross-reactivity of naloxone and naloxone glucuronide with the Immunalysis oxycodone HEIA and, to a lesser extent, with the Microgenics DRI oxycodone assay to prevent false accusations against patients taking Suboxone. Urine from these patients may produce positive results in oxycodone assays at low cutoff concentrations because of the presence of a combination of naloxone and unidentified compounds.” (See reference 54)

If you have the sample sent to a lab for confirmation testing the lab will be able to clear up the false positive.

Subj: Sulindac
Date: 8/18/2011
Can sulindac make me be positive for a urinary dope test?


AskDocWeb: No, Sulindac has been tested and found to be non cross-reacting with drugs of abuse.

Subj: Ambien false positive?
Date: 8/20/2011
My sister took Ambien and tested positive for LSD. Is that possible? False positive? Thank you.


AskDocWeb: Ambien has not been reported to cause any false positives on drug tests for drugs of abuse. However, there are many reports of amnesia where people have been arrested for doing things they don’t remember while on Ambien. See for yourself.

Subj: Testing positive for serax
Date: 8/20/2011
I’m repeatedly testing positive for serax in a drug screen. The only medications I take or am cleared to take is methadone and cymbalta. Can cymbalta cause a false positive for serax?


AskDocWeb: Cymbalta has not been documented to cause a false positive result on a urine drug test. If you are convinced that it is a false positive then get a GC/MS confirmation test to find out what is really going on.

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