Getting Tested for THC? Here's What You Need to Know (2023)

Pursuing a new job can be both an exciting and nerve-wracking experience, but for cannabis users or anyone considering using cannabis, it can also induce the gut-wrenching fear of an unexpected drug test followed by a frantic search for quick ways to do a marijuana cleanse.

Even in states with medical or adult-use cannabis legalization in full swing, some jobs still maintain stringent drug policies that forbid employees from consuming cannabis on their own time.

Having advance notice of an upcoming drug test may give you enough time to take a tolerance break and abstain from consuming, regardless it's important to understand how THC operates throughout the body and how to healthily and effectively move cannabinoids out of your system.

How Does THC Move Through the Body?

You might have heard rumors that cannabis can stay in your system for days, weeks, or maybe even months, but the way THC travels and interacts with the body paints a slightly more complex picture.

If cannabis is smoked or vaporized, THC enters the bloodstream from the lungs and goes directly to the heart, where it is then pumped throughout the body to the two types of cannabinoid receptors found in the human body.

“THC travels in the blood to the CB1 receptors located in the brain and central nervous system, and the CB2 receptors located in the spleen and immune system,” said Itzhak Kurerk, Ph.D., CEO and co-founder of Cannformatics, a Northern California biotech company researching improvements to medical cannabis.

Getting Tested for THC? Here's What You Need to Know (1)

Every time the blood circulates throughout the body, a certain portion of THC passes through the liver. When THC is broken down in the liver, it forms at least 80 different metabolites, including 11-hydroxy-THC (11-OH-THC) and 11-nor-9-carboxy-THC (THC-COOH), both of which are inactive forms of THC that remain in the body far longer than active THC. Some of these metabolites, such as THC-COOH, are stored in body fat and gradually eliminated from the body through urine and feces.

“Tests for cannabis consumption mainly detect a metabolite of THC found in urine,” Kurek explained. “This metabolite [THC-COOH] is a result of the detoxification process in the liver by cytochrome P450 enzymes and further oxidation.”

When cannabis is ingested in the form of an edible or capsule, THC enters the bloodstream through the walls of the stomach and intestine. THC will travel directly to the liver where a substantial amount is eliminated or metabolized before the cannabinoid receptors are activated. After that, the remaining THC and its corresponding metabolites are put into circulation by the heart, where they both reach the brain.

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So, contrary to what some might think, most cannabis drug tests aren't only specifically looking for THC, but also metabolites such as THC-COOH that are created as the cannabinoid is rapidly broken down in the body.

Types of Drug Tests

Currently, there are drug screening methods designed to detect the presence of THC and THC metabolites in urine, blood, saliva, and hair.

Urine

A urine test is the preferred method used to screen for cannabis use, as this is the recommended test by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), a branch of the U.S Department of Health and Human Services that creates drug testing standards for government employees.

A 2012 study published in the Iranian Journal of Psychiatry explained why urine tests are more effective than blood, saliva, or hair. “Urine is the preferred sample because of higher concentration and longer detection time of metabolites in it. Moreover, urine can easily be sampled,” the study stated.

Urine drug tests have a specific sensitivity regarding the cutoff concentration of THC-COOH, the benchmark used to determine the results of the test. While the cutoff point can generally range from 15 nanograms per milliliter (ng/mL) to 100ng/mL, the most common cutoff used for urine tests is 50 ng/mL, which is the value recommended by SAMHSA. This cutoff concentration determines the timeframe that a drug test will show up positive or negative for cannabis use. To fully grasp the finite scope of this cutoff limit measurement, consider that a nanogram is one-billionth of a gram, while a milliliter measures fluid volume equal to 1/1,000 of a liter. In the case of a marijuana drug screening, the test results would be positive if the amount of THC metabolites in the sample exceeded 50 ng/mL.

Blood

The researchers from the same 2012 study also stated that blood tests can only detect cannabis use a few hours after consumption.

“Maximum delta-9-THC plasma concentration was observed approximately 8 minutes after onset of smoking, while 11-OH-THC peaked at 15 minutes and THC-COOH at 81 minutes. This delta-9-THC concentration rapidly decreases to 1-4 ng/mL within 3-4 hours,” the study stated.

Saliva

Cannabis use can also be detected in saliva, but this also has a more limited window. A 2014 review on cannabinoids in oral fluid found that THC could be detected in occasional users one to three days after use, while saliva in chronic users could be detected up to 29 days after use.

Hair

Hair tests are the most sensitive type of drug tests, and can detect THC and THC-COOH up to 90 days after consumption. But these tests have proven to be inaccurate, and even non-consumers could trigger a false positive if they come into contact with a cannabis user. A 2015 study published in Scientific Reports, bluntly titled “Finding cannabinoids in hair does not prove cannabis consumption,” stated: “At first glance, differentiation of the route of THC-COOH incorporation into hair seems irrelevant as long as positive THC-COOH findings in hair require THC uptake by the individual under investigation. However, considering the presence of THC-COOH in sebum/sweat, a transfer to other persons' hair is possible.”

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Getting Tested for THC? Here's What You Need to Know (2)

How Long Does it Take for THC to Move Out of Your System?

As for the question of how long THC can be detected in your system, it depends not only on the type of drug tests, but also relies on a variety of individual factors, such as the consumer's metabolism and amount of cannabis used.

“How long cannabis stays in your system is still an open question, and depends on many factors,” Kurek explained. “Experiments on frequent cannabis users have found residual THC can be detected for 5-13 days post-consumption.”

There are a variety of factors that might impact the amount of time that THC will stay in your system, including:

    • Dosage: The greater the amount of THC, the longer it will take the body to detoxify and excrete THC and its metabolites.
    • Frequency of use: How much and for how long does a consumer use marijuana?
    • Genetics: People inherit different variants of the cytochrome P450 superfamily of enzymes, which modify THC in the body resulting in excretion in the urine, according to Kurek.
    • Sex: Some studies have shown that men who smoke marijuana may have higher circulating levels of THC than women.
    • Weight: The more body fat the cannabis user has, more THC metabolites are stored in the body and for longer periods.
    • Metabolism: What's the rate at which the body can eliminate the presence of cannabis from the system?

Although we've established that there's no clear cut answer on how long it takes to get THC out of your system, past research on THC detection methods allows us to estimate the time it takes to cleanse the body of marijuana.

A 2005 review by Paul Cary, director of the Toxicology and Drug Monitoring Laboratory at the University of Missouri, found that while detection times in excess of 30 days do occur in some cases, they are largely an exception. The study acknowledges the various factors that determine how long THC metabolites remain in the body, but also provides “practical cannabinoid detection guidance” to offer a general idea of how long marijuana will stay in an individual's system.

“Based upon recent scientific evidence, at the 50 ng/mL cutoff concentration for the detection of cannabinoids in urine (using the currently available laboratory-based screening methods) it would be unlikely for a chronic user to produce a positive urine drug test result for longer than 10 days after the last smoking episode,” the study stated.

At a lower 20 ng/mL cutoff concentration, the study also states that it would be uncommon for a chronic marijuana smoker to produce a positive urine drug test result longer than 21 days after consumption. For those who only use cannabis occasionally, the review states that it would be unusual for cannabinoids to be detected in urine three to four days after consumption at the 50 ng/mL cutoff level. For one-time marijuana use, the most stringent 20 ng/mL cutoff concentration point shouldn't detect cannabinoids after 7 days.

(Video) How to Remove THC From Your System!

Using a specified cutoff concentration point and time frame, drug testing laboratories are essentially able to look at levels of THC metabolites and figure out the last time the subject used cannabis.

“If the lab quantitates how much THC-11-hydroxy or THC-11-carboxy is found, that can be used to date when your last use of THC was, approximately,” explained Dr. Joseph Morgan, Senior Medical Director at Onconova Therapeutics, Inc., a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company focused on developing small-molecule drug candidates to treat cancer.

“In other words, somebody who tests for no THC, no 11-hydroxy-THC, and a small amount of 11-carboxy-THC [THC-COOH], they can reliably say they were not stoned at the time of the test, and most likely their most recent use was at least a week before, possibly even one or 2 months before,” he added.

Getting Tested for THC? Here's What You Need to Know (3)

While these guidances help construct a framework for the court system and employers to follow, random drug screenings have a tendency of catching cannabis users by surprise. In the event you have a surprise drug test coming up and you're unsure whether you still have THC in your system, it's possible to give your body a marijuana cleanse that is legal and healthy.

Easy, Ethical Ways to Do a Marijuana Cleanse

It might be hard to admit, but the most effective way to give your body a marijuana cleanse is simple: Don't consume any cannabis for one to three months. If abstaining from THC is not an option for you, know that because the most common type of drug test is a urine screening, the terms “marijuana cleanse” or “detox” typically refer to cleaning THC metabolites out of urine until they're undetectable.

First, don't try to cheat a drug screening under any circumstances, especially not by purchasing fake urine or other strange products that could get you into trouble,” Morgan warns of the risk of using products that supply fake chemical urine. “If you're found doing that, then they'll know you're obviously guilty of something,” he said.

There are plenty of detox products that claim to assist with a marijuana cleanse, but keep in mind that these detox methods may not be 100% effective. One popular way to detoxify the body is by using bentonite clay, a clay made from volcanic ash that is purported to absorb toxicants, chemicals, and other impurities from the body. It can be used internally by mixing some into a glass of water.

Outside of detox formulas, there are other effective practices you can integrate into your daily routine. Focus on things like physical health, vitamin and food intake, while also recognizing how THC metabolites enter the urine. Morgan added an important caveat, explaining that exercising a day or two before a drug screening could cause THC-COOH to be released from fat cells into the urine stream.

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“Try to be healthy and not fat, be well-hydrated, but don't exercise vigorously the day before or the day of your drug test,” Morgan explained.

FAQs:

How Long Do I Have to Detox if I Just Took One Puff?

Research has shown that someone who infrequently smokes marijuana will have THC in their system for anywhere from five to 13 days, and for a frequent marijuana smoker, THC could remain as long as 30 days. The duration of time that cannabis is detectable in the body depends on a lot of individual-specific factors, including weight, age, sex, genetics, metabolism, and more.

For example, if you have a high metabolism, little body fat, have not smoked recently, and are not a frequent marijuana user, then “one puff” of cannabis would likely remain in your system for around three to five days. However, it's important to note that the exact answer will vary depending on factors such as dosage size and physical health.

How Accurate Are Home Drug Tests Compared to Lab Tests?

At-home drug tests are usually relatively accurate, but there are a lot of external factors that could alter the result. In addition, many at-home drug testing brands will differ in their sensitivity. In 2015, 90% of the 55 million drug tests performed were urine tests. There is a possibility a person will fail a drug test at home if they have certain levels of THC in their system, and there is also the possibility that the test will be inaccurate due to external factors including temperature and time.

In general, at home drug tests are as accurate as lab tests, as long as the external factors at home are controlled, but the lab test is not as complex as a blood analysis. At-home kits from reputable brands that analyze urine, mouth swabs, and hair follicles, have been found to be as accurate as in-lab tests.

The most common drug screening method used both at home and in the lab setting is called an immunoassay (IA) panel, which includes the SAMHSA-5, a standard established by the federal Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. The types of tests range in their sensitivity to certain drugs in the person's system. Some more expensive tests will be more sensitive, but at-home tests often reflect what will appear in the lab. The “more sensitive” test means a test at a lab may have lower “cutoff levels” of substances, which refers to the amount of a substance that is in a person's system.

Does Alcohol Help Cleanse the Body for a Drug Test?

It is a myth that alcohol can help “cleanse” the body or fat cells of THC. At best, alcohol is known as a diuretic, which means it will help a person excrete more urine than one would otherwise. Research shows alcohol could prolong the detoxification of the body because alcohol has been found to further dehydrate the body. Currently, there is no research that suggests alcohol can cleanse the body any faster than drinking water or liquids over the course of a week.

Can I Use a Sauna to Help Detox From THC?

A person can increase sweat excretion by using a sauna. THC is stored in fat cells, so sweating is one of the major ways to speed the process up. But sitting in a sauna does not guarantee that that drug test results will change, because there are so many other individual-specific variables at play.

How Much Urine is Needed for a Drug Test?

The average amount of urine in milliliters needed for a drug test is 30 milliliters. This amount can vary, for example, tests done for employees of the U.S. Department of Transportation require 45 milliliters of urine for a test.

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Is 14 Days Enough Time to Prepare for a Drug Test?

The amount of time needed to prepare for a drug test depends on a person's metabolism, age, sex, weight, and most importantly, how much they consumed. For instance, if a highly concentrated THC product is consumed, it will likely remain in one's system longer than a low-dosage THC product would. Furthermore, frequent marijuana users will take longer for THC to fully leave their system, possibly twice the amount of time depending on other factors.

How Will Water Fasting Affect a Urine Test?

While drinking water helps cleanse the body by increasing urination, it is not recommended to fast using water before taking a drug test. One reason is that water fasts could further dehydrate you. One 2016 study published in the journal Nutrients found about 20% to 30% of your daily water intake comes from the foods you eat.

The information contained in this site is provided for informational purposes only, and should not be construed as medical or legal advice.

FAQs

How far back does a lab urine test go? ›

What is the detection window for a lab-based, urine drug test? A: Urine drug testing typically detects recent drug use in the previous 24 to 72 hours.

What level of THC is considered impaired? ›

“A number of States have set a THC limit in their laws indicating that if a suspect's THC concentration is above that level (typically 5 ng/ml of blood), then the suspect is to be considered impaired.

Does Delta 9 THC come up on drug test? ›

Urine testing: Delta 9 THC is typically detectable in urine for about three to 30 days after use. Saliva testing: Delta 9 can be found in saliva up to 72 hours after use, depending on what test is used. Blood testing: Delta 9 THC is usually detectable in blood for around 36 hours after use.

How long does Delta 8 stay in your system? ›

Because their structures are similar, delta-8 is expected to stay in the body for the same amount of time as delta-9 THC. For occasional users, this could be as little as 2 to 5 days. For regular users, it could be up to 15 days.

What happens when a drug test is sent to a lab? ›

Lab-based drug testing is when samples are sent to a certified laboratory to undergo an initial screening test and more stringent confirmatory testing for drugs (e.g., cocaine, marijuana, and amphetamines) and specimen validity (e.g., to determine if the sample has been tampered with).

Is it better to fail a DOT drug test or refuse? ›

Is a DOT Drug Test Refusal the Same as a Failed Drug Test? Refusing to take a drug test has the same consequences as failing a DOT drug test. Your employer must immediately remove you from safety-sensitive duties, per DOT regulations.

How many nanograms is a joint? ›

After smoking a joint, the user's THC level is about 100 nanograms/ml for several minutes but drops very quickly to less than 2 nanograms/ml in four hours, Brubacher said.

What does 10 ng mL mean? ›

To what does ng/mL refer? Nanograms per milliliter, abbreviated ng/mL, is the unit of measure most commonly used to express drug testing cut-off levels and quantitative test results in urine and oral fluid. A nanogram is 10-9 grams.

How do you get delta-8 out of your system in a week? ›

How to Flush Delta-8 Out of Your System
  1. Drink Some H20. Drinking plenty of water is the best way to flush delta 8 out of your system as quickly as possible. ...
  2. Eat High Fiber Foods. Foods high in fiber help you excrete waste more regularly, helping you flush out THC metabolites more quickly. ...
  3. Work Out. Sweat it out!
Dec 16, 2022

Will delta-8 get me fired? ›

The legalization of Delta 8 THC would not change the laws regarding drug testing and employment. Employers may still have the right to conduct drug tests and to take action, including terminating employment, based on positive test results for THC.

How to pass urine test delta-8? ›

Generally, you can get rid of Delta-8 THC metabolites in your body by abstaining from taking any THC-related products for at least ten days before a drug test. Doing this will allow you to pass the urine test.

Can you fail drug test for delta-8? ›

Therefore, participants using delta-8 will likely screen positive for cannabinoids—either from the delta-8 metabolites themselves or from other cannabinoids that are present in the product being used.

Can you fail drug test with delta-10? ›

The bad news is that yes, Delta-10 THC will make you fail a drug test. Much like Delta-8 THC, Delta-10 is a close cousin to Delta-9. It too has a similar chemical structure meaning that Delta-10 THC will most likely appear as THC on a standard drug test.

Is delta-8 harder to get out of your system? ›

There is a very good chance that the Delta 8 THC will clear out of your system in much less time than its traditional Delta 9 counterpart. The length of time it takes for your system to use up the Delta 8 THC depends on several factors including how much you've consumed and how frequently you use it.

What happens if you get a positive drug test? ›

If the test result is proven to be legitimate (especially after multiple retests), you will most likely lose your job. If drug testing was part of a screening application, the company will probably revoke your job offer. However, in some industries or states, you might be given a second chance.

How long does it take for a drug test to go to a lab? ›

Negative results, therefore, are generally available within 2-3 days, while positive test results may take up to a week to confirm. Though it may take slightly longer than urine tests, hair tests have the advantage of being able to detect drug use from many months before the specimen was collected.

How long does it take for a positive drug test to come back? ›

Drug test results typically take 24 to 48 hours, depending on the type of test being performed (e.g., urine, hair or DOT).

What are the 3 reasons for rejection and cancellation of drug test? ›

Rejected for Testing” (with the reason stated). You must always cancel such a test. (b) The following are “fatal flaws”: (1) There is no printed collector's. no collector's signature; (2) The specimen ID numbers on. the specimen bottle and the CCF do not match; (3) The specimen.

What drugs will make you fail a DOT drug test? ›

DOT drug tests require laboratory testing (49 CFR Part 40 Subpart F) for the following five classes of drugs:
  • Marijuana.
  • Cocaine.
  • Opiates – opium and codeine derivatives.
  • Amphetamines and methamphetamines.
  • Phencyclidine – PCP.
Jul 22, 2021

How many grams is a good joint? ›

But it is a convincing measurement nonetheless. Indeed, in 2015 a global drug survey conducted by academics found that most users get about three joints from a single gram of marijuana, or roughly 0.33 grams per joint. Of course, weight is just a piece of the puzzle.

How many gummies equal 1 joint? ›

Joints can range from 1/4 gram to 1 gram, more or less, and the THC content of the cannabis varies also. But, assuming a 1/2-gram joint of 20% THC weed, that's 100 mg of THC, or ten edibles.

Are lab drug tests more sensitive? ›

What about accuracy? Lab-based drug tests are more accurate. We like to say they are more rigorous, more involved, and more defensible in a court of law, all of which are elements certain organizations must consider, particularly heavily regulated industries, like the DOT.

How common is a negative dilute drug test? ›

Reasons For A Dilute Specimen

According to literature, about five percent of specimens meet dilute criteria3. Occurrence of dilute specimens can be attributed to multiple reasons, a few of which are highlighted below.

What to do if you have a false positive drug test? ›

What should I do if I get a false positive result on a drug test? If you think you've had a false positive on a urine drug test, consider whether any medications you take could be responsible. Then talk to your healthcare provider. They may be able to confirm the results by running a second test.

How long will 4 hits of Delta 8 stay in your system? ›

Summary: Delta 8 THC Metabolism & Duration

In summary, delta 8 THC will remain in the system for about two days if you've only used it once or twice. If you take delta 8 often or in high doses, you may need to wait somewhere between 2 and 4 weeks to be cleared from the body completely.

Can delta 8 gummies get you high? ›

3. Delta-8 THC has psychoactive and intoxicating effects. Delta-8 THC has psychoactive and intoxicating effects, similar to delta-9 THC (i.e., the component responsible for the “high” people may experience from using cannabis). The FDA is aware of media reports of delta-8 THC products getting consumers “high.”

What happens if you take Delta 8 everyday? ›

Consuming delta-8 can lead to many unintended side effects, including psychosis. Psychosis can occur due to the regular consumption of cannabis products and can even trigger long-lasting mental health conditions.

Can nurses smoke delta-8? ›

However, the problem for nurses is that there is no way to know if there are trace elements of THC in Delta 8 which would show up on a urine drug test. The Boards of nursing still frown on the use of marijuana even with a medical card.

What happens when you stop smoking delta-8? ›

THC withdrawal symptoms may include–Trouble with sleeping, irritability, decreased focus, anxiety, depressive state, and headaches. The good news here is that withdrawal symptoms of delta-8 use are far less severe than, say, opioids.

What are the dangers of smoking delta-8? ›

Consuming large quantities of delta-8 or unlabeled delta-9 THC can cause chronic vomiting, psychosis and addiction when used at high concentrations. Manufacturing quality checks are essential in the production of these products for public health standards.

How much Delta 8 Do you have to smoke to fail a urine test? ›

Whether you're consuming delta 9 THC from marijuana or delta 8 THC from hemp, the cannabinoids metabolize into the same THC metabolites in your body. That means consuming any amount of any THC can cause you to fail a drug test. However, the legal limit is 0.03% delta 9 THC in a CBD or hemp-derived product.

What causes false negative drug test? ›

False-negatives can occur when the urine drug concentration is below the threshold level set by the laboratory performing the test. Dilute urine, the duration of time between ingestion of the drug and time of testing, and the quantity of the drug ingested may affect the occurrence of false-negatives.

Which drug test is most accurate? ›

Blood testing is expensive and invasive, but is the most reliable for determining if the individual is under the influence of drugs or alcohol right now. Hair testing has the longest detection window, nearly 90 days, and is the least invasive method of all, but also has the highest cost.

Can CBD vape test positive? ›

CBD itself will not cause a false positive drug test but people can still test positive for marijuana because there could actually be small amounts of THC in these products, especially if they're made from hemp,” says Steve Dudley, director of the Arizona Poison and Drug Information Center.

What is stronger delta 8 or 10? ›

The most significant difference between Delta 8 and Delta 10 is that Delta 8 is more potent than Delta 10. Delta 8 has a higher concentration of cannabinoids, making it much stronger. Delta 8 provides psychoactive effects that last much longer, whereas Delta 10 has more of a Sativa effect.

Will CBD pop on military drug test? ›

CBD alone is non-psychotropic, which means it doesn't produce the high associated with other marijuana components like THC. Although the levels may not be high, they can still result in a positive drug test, which can subject service members to disciplinary action.

What are the long term effects of delta-8? ›

Serious Health Concerns:

Marijuana, Delta-8, and related products have been shown to cause liver damage, depression, paranoia, memory/processing problems, infertility, cardiac problems, and cancer.

How long does Delta 9 gummies stay in your urine? ›

Delta-9 THC gummies tend to stay in your system for about as long as other types of edibles. Here are some rough guidelines of what you can expect: Tangible effects: 2-8 hours. Detection in urine: 3-5 days.

How far back does a 10 panel urine test go? ›

A 10-panel drug test is one of many screenings employers can use to detect prescription or illicit drugs.
...
How Far Back Does A 10-panel Urine Test Go?
SubstanceDetection Time Frame
Amphetamines48 hours
Barbiturates24 hours to 3 weeks
BenzodiazepinesUp to six weeks for extended use
Cocaine2-4 days
5 more rows
Jun 8, 2022

How long does it take for a urine test to come back from the lab Labcorp? ›

In most cases, lab test results delivery times should not exceed two weeks. The most common reason for delay in receiving results is inaccurate or out-of-date personal information on record with your health care providers or in your Labcorp Patient™​ portal personal profile.

How does the lab process a 24-hour urine test? ›

A 24-hour urine collection is a simple lab test that measures what's in your urine. The test is used to check kidney function. A 24-hour urine collection is done by collecting your urine in a special container over a full 24-hour period. The container must be kept cool until the urine is returned to the lab.

How long does it take a lab to process a 24-hour urine test? ›

Test results from a 24-hour urine collection are typically available the same day. The test results will be sent to your doctor, who will share them with you.

What shows up on drug test urine? ›

It requires a sample of your urine (pee). Urine drug tests are most commonly used to detect alcohol, amphetamines, benzodiazepines, opiates/opioids, cocaine and marijuana (THC).

What is the most common drug test for employment? ›

Urinalysis – A urine test is the most common form of pre-employment drug testing and is typically conducted once a conditional offer of employment has been sent. A urine test can show traces of drug use even after the effects of the drug have worn off and remain in the body for an extended period of time.

What can be detected in a urine test? ›

It's used to detect and manage a wide range of disorders, such as urinary tract infections, kidney disease and diabetes. A urinalysis involves checking the appearance, concentration and content of urine. For example, a urinary tract infection can make urine look cloudy instead of clear.

How long does it take to find out if you failed a drug test Labcorp? ›

Results for most routine tests are available within 2 weeks. If you still don't see your results after that time, check that: Your personal profile information is correct in your Labcorp Patient account.

Do doctors ring you with results? ›

If a result is sufficiently abnormal to cause any immediate medical concerns the doctor will contact you themselves. If a doctor wants to discuss a test result where there is no significant level of concern, they may ask reception to book you in for a routine telephone call.

What should I avoid before a 24 hour urine test? ›

To the best extent possible, avoid using vitamins, coffee, alcoholic beverages, salt and vanilla-containing foods for at least 24 hours before you start collecting the 24-hour urine and during the entire collection period.

How much water should I drink for 24 hour urine collection? ›

Each time you void, the urine should be collected and stored in the large brown containers. Keep the containers at refrigerator temperature through the 24 hours. Remember, drink at least 8 glasses of water during the 24 hour period.

Can you drink water during a 24 hour urine test? ›

In order to get correct results, it is important to save every urine sample. If you forget to save any urine, tell your health care provider. You will need to drink plenty of fluids during this time, 6-8 (8oz.) glasses if possible.

How quickly should you test urine? ›

If you can't hand your urine sample in within 1 hour, you should put the container in a sealed plastic bag then store it in the fridge at around 4C. Do not keep it for longer than 24 hours. The bacteria in the urine sample can multiply if it is not kept in a fridge.

Why is early morning urine the best sample to be tested? ›

The first urine of the day is best because the level of bacteria and chemicals in your urine will be higher. Wash your hands before collecting the urine.

Does it matter what time you start a 24 hour urine test? ›

It does not matter how much or little urine is passed each time, as long as every drop is collected. Begin the urine collection in the morning after you wake up, after you have emptied your bladder for the first time.

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