Pros and Cons of Alcohol ETG Testing

Pros:

  • Evades Some of the Issues With Urine Analysis: Often there are issues with altered ethanol levels in a

    Alcohol ETG Test

    urine sample, which can make the sample invalid for urine testing. These can be caused by evaporation and also by diabetes , which increases the level of glucose and ethanol with it due to yeast naturally found in human urine.

  • Highly Specific and Sensitive: ETG testing can specifically test for alcohol and lower level of alcohol as compared to regular urine testing, which relies on ethanol levels in bodily fluids that can often fluctuate based on factors like glucose and yeast levels.  It can also be tested for in all forms of body fluids and hair.
  • Comfortably Priced: Even with the clearer results, the cost remains in a range that is manageable for most companies which is generally about $25 per test. This means that alcohol testing needn’t be a large expenditure for the company using the EtG form of testing.
  • Longer Testing Period: While most alcohol tests can only test within 8-12 hours of consumption, EtG testing is able to test for  as many as 3-4 days after consumption. This is because regular tests rely on ethanol levels detected in the urine while an EtG test can evaluate the presence of EtG a biomarker left behind after alcohol consumption.
  • More Accurate: ETG alcohol testing can detect alcohol consumption even in small doses which is an improvement over standard testing because it’s not necessary for the person being tested to be a consistent drinker to detect the use of alcohol.

Cons:

  • On-Site Testing Isn’t Available: This means that all tests need to be mailed in for evaluation. This is because scientific evaluation is required to verify the results are correct.
  • Sensitivity Could Work Against this Form of Testing: ETG testing is sensitive enough that it can sometimes give a positive result for alcohol based on incidental exposure. This means that if a person wears products that contain ethanol(hand sanitizers and mouthwash for example), eats foods that contain it or inhales ethanol it could result in a positive test even for a person who doesn’t drink.
  • Neither SAMHSA or the FDA Approve its Use: This isn’t to say that its results aren’t valid; it only means that both organizations agree there needs to be a longer evaluation period to test the validity of the EtG method versus the well established urine testing used in a wide variety of industries for several years.
  • EtG Testing Requires Other Verification for Legal Action: In order for this form of testing to be considered viable in court, there needs to be a backup standard test to evaluate the results or where this is viable a contract confirming that the person being tested knows that there may be a positive result from incidental exposure to ethanol.

There’s Only One Company That Produces the Test: This limits the ease of access for some companies and could keep the price at a higher rate until this changes.

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