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A person tested positive for Methamphetamine from a hair follicle

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A person tested positive for Methamphetamine from a hair follicle test utilizing the methods of radioimmunoassay and mass spectrometry. The person claims the positive result was from the use of a Vicks inhaler and Phentermine. Is this a false positive or a true indication the person used Meth as some point prior to the test?

911Doctor :


911Doctor :

are you there?

911Doctor :

mass spectrometery is nearly foolproof.

911Doctor :

you will never get someone to admit, even in a court of law, that they used a drug if they are just not going to admit it.

911Doctor :

false positives can occur with even the most accurate test....

911Doctor :

but the likelihood of this test being falsely positive is so remote as to be ridiculous.

911Doctor :

i would never take this bet.

911Doctor :

but if you look long enough you will find something to support your side of the arguement...

911Doctor :

like this...

911Doctor :

911Doctor :

my money is on true positive.

911Doctor :


Customer: replied 5 years ago.
Can you give me the path/breakdown for how you arrived at your answer?
yeah, sure....
first of all i'm an ER doc and it's a plain fact of life that people who drink and drug lie to me all the time for many reasons... the blood alcohol level is as foolproof a test as you can get... people come in under arrest.... 'have you been drinking''... 'no' or 'a couple of beers'... of course they have been drinking... a lot usually, you can smell it across the room...that's part one....

part two, in the context of dr- patient relationship, when a positive drug test comes back, and i hate the urine drug test because they miss a lot, but when they are positive they are generally positive... i will go to the patient and ask again if they have been using drugs.. they say 'no' and i say 'look here, you have been using marijuana' and then the hedging starts... well i was in a room with someone smoking it yesterday (have to be a room the size of a box filled with marijuana smoke for an hour or so) or, 'yeah, but pot's not a drug' or 'the people next to me cook meth in the basement'..... so the tests, when positive are usually positive... the problem from my perspective is that they can be negative when they are truly positive.

example... person using percocet and valium regularly may test negative for them on a urine drug screen because the screen is set high to avoid false positives.

now let's talk about mass spectrometry-gas chromatograph... that's seriously more accurate than the standard urine drug screen. to argue that vicks and phenteramine caused this test to be false positive is just a flat out lie until it is shown in a lab that wow, this is weird, but vick and phenteramine look just like methamphetamine on this space age, super specific test... not gonna happen... more likely the lab tech had meth on his glove when he set the test up than some cockamamey story like that is true... the gas chromatograph sees what it sees... it's not like looking through a bent piece of glass and trying to see what's on the other side... it's like using the hubble telescope to look at the moon.

the odds of this being a truly false positive test are about the same as a bad DNA test... folks on death row are let out on DNA evidence, and that's the way to look at this... since the person in question can always deny and then question the evidence collection and method etc... essentially this ends up being a legal argument more than a scienc one.... the chances of false positive test is almost zero but not zero...

do we feel, based on what we know, that we are justified in taking action on this test performed by a certified lab etc... yes. that's why they drug test... to catch liars... and it holds in court.

that's the best i can do.

Customer: replied 5 years ago.
Thank you. I should inform you I am an attorney, practicing mainly in criminal defense. I have defended people high on meth, possessing meth, transporting meth, etc. Actually, I am currently defending an individual accused of committing a terrible crime while under the influence of meth, particularly, a meth induced psychosis. However, the matter I've submitted to involves a family law issue wherein I represent an individual who tested negative for meth while the other party tested positive for meth. The other party has provided the judge with a note from a physician assistant opining a vicks inhaler and a diet drug caused the positive result. I KNOW this is not correct, however, the judge is tending to believe the physician assistant, who, by the way, asserts his supervising doctor agrees with his opinion even though said doctor's signature is not affixed to the note. Utmost concerning is the judge is inclined to grant the other party unsupervised visitation with a very young child. I have been given 2 weeks to refute the claims of the other party and have undertaken intense research and questioning of professionals in your area. Can you tell me why the two test involved with the hair follicle testing are accurate in their results in scientific terms?
I can't do this, but you are in luck, I do expert witness testimony and it's pretty sharp of you to fish on here instead of paying the fee of a consultant. But, if you are being truthful with me, you want to pay someone to refute this... Besides, I hardly think something garnered from this site would be allowed in court. You might even get your answer for free.

You need a toxicologist. An MD who does poisonings, overdoses, and knows everything there is to know about the testing. Finding one is pretty easy. You call your local or regional poison center and ask who the toxicologist in charge is. That's who you want. They can talk your ear off on drug testing and false positives and negatives.

Not that I don't want to help, just reached the limit of my 'at the ready' knowledge base.

Anything else counselor?
911Doctor and 4 other Health Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
Thank you. I have spoken with a couple of pharmacist and a couple of doctors, yet you have given me arguably the best answer - the lead to the toxicologist. This simply and obvious source never dawned on me. Your fee is money well spent. My client will appreciate it.

Have a good evening.

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