EtG / EtS - Ethyl Glucuronide Ethyl Sulfate Alcohol Drug Test
Also known as "The 80 Hour Alcohol Test"
EtG/EtS is a laboratory based urine test that will detect the presence of alcohol up to 80 hours after consumption. This is sometimes referred to as “The 80 Hour Alcohol Test” or "Alcohol Urine Test" and tests for Ethyl Glucuronide and Ethyl Sulfate. This is the Ethyl Glucuronide urine test or EtG testing of alcohol in urine. What is the EtG alcohol detection time? Up to 80 hours after consumption of alcohol, depending upon amount consumed and the metabolism of the person being tested.
Ethyl Glucuronide (EtG) and Ethyl Sulfate (EtS) are metabolites produced by the body only after the consumption of alcohol has been consumed. EtG and EtS are excreted from the body in various ways. Our laboratory is one of only a few laboratories in the country that has the ability to identify and quantify these two metabolites. The Ethyl Glucuronide test is one of several Drug Alcohol Test Kits available.
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EtG / EtS - Ethyl Glucuronide Ethyl Sulfate Alcohol Test
EtG and EtS testing will allow you to quantify alcohol consumption up to 80 hours afterward.
This is a LCMSMS Lab Test (a.k.a. LC-MS-MS or LCMS, LC-MS) for professional laboratory testing of human urine for the presence of metabolized alcohol.
#LAB-EtG Alcohol Test
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Ethyl Glucuronide Urine Test FAQ
What is EtG testing?
EtG testing is a reliable and accurate method of verifying abstinence from alcohol use and of detecting alcoholic beverage consumption. EtG testing reveals alcohol use up to three-and-a-half days from the time of the urine collection
How accurate is EtG testing?
EtG testing is not subject to adulteration, fermentation, or cross-reactivity; it is simple, precise and reliable. EtG testing reveals alcohol exposure from the prior approximately 80-hours; the actual “window of detection” will, of course, vary from person to person, related to dose, individual metabolism, and test sensitivity.There are over forty peer-reviewed articles on EtG, published in major international scientific journals. Compared to other alcohol testing systems that claim continuous monitoring, EtG testing has by far the most scientific validity.Because alcohol is extremely common in the environment, inadvertent alcohol exposure, typically related to frequent use of high-alcohol content cleaning products, has been known to create innocent positives. Such cases are relatively rare, but must be considered when reviewing a non-negative EtG test result.
As in all substance abuse testing, professional assessment of non-negative test results is always appropriate. See our list of products which contain alcohol.
How is EtG testing used?
EtG testing is used to monitor impaired health professionals throughout the United States. Doctors, dentists, nurses, pharmacists and other health care professionals all benefit from the routine verification of abstinence provided by EtG tests.It is used increasingly by treatment agencies, courts and community corrections programs. It is used in accident investigations, when alcohol consumption is considered a potential contributing factor.
What about the different levels of EtG testing?
Three different test levels are commonly available:
100 ng/ml LC/MS/MS testing – This level of sensitivity is most commonly used to monitor individuals for professional or clinical reasons, such as impaired health professionals. It is often used by criminal justice agencies. Testing at this level will occasionally (about 1 non-negative in 500) pick up incidental exposure.
250 ng/ml LC/MS/MS testing – This level of testing will detect about 97% of episodes of alcohol use as compared to 100 ng/ml testing). This level has a high enough cut-off to avoid most incidental exposure.
500 ng/ml LC/MS/MS testing – This level of testing will detect about 90% of episodes of alcohol use as compared to 100 ng/ml testing. This level is used increasingly, especially for routine clinical and forensic applications as most "innocent positives" (that is, non-negative results due to inadvertent alcohol exposure) occur below the 500 ng/ml level. This is the cut off level that we use for our Ethyl Glucuronide test. It provides the fewest false positives from secondary exposure to alcohol.
What about confirmation?
Our Ethyl Glucuronide test is a confirmation test! Our EtG test is performed by the LCMSMS method and simultaneously detects both EtG and EtS. EtS is another alcohol marker, allowing for immediate confirmation, saving time and getting the report to the requesting agency quickly.
What is the significance of the EtG level reported in a positive result?
As with all drug test results, it is best to think of EtG results as simply Negative or Non-Negative. The level of EtG reported, which might, for example, be as low as 600, or as high as 100,000 does not necessarily reflect greater or lesser drinking. Many factors can affect the level of EtG detected in an individual’s urine sample, so avoid making undue assumptions based on EtG detection levels reports.
Are there any meds that would give a positive EtG?
Occasionally we will be asked about a Ethyl Glucuronide "false positive". So far only ethyl alcohol seems to produce EtG or EtS. So, there are no EtG "false positives". The issue is really more where did the alcohol come from? Many medications include ethanol as a solvent (cough syrup, etc) and therefore could cause very low level of EtG or EtS. For more information, see our list of products that show positive for EtG / EtS.
What about polyethylene glycol? Can it cause a positive EtG?
Probably not but no studies have been conducted to our knowledge! Polyethylene glycol can be found as an ingredient in various tablets and OTC meds. There is no evidence that degradation of this compound produces ethanol, especially in enough quantity to cause a positive EtG/EtS test.
Does warm weather during shipment cause a more rapid breakdown of EtG in urine?
Recent experiments show that heating urine to 100 C (boiling point of H2O) actually increased the stability of EtG. The data are showing that at room temperature, in some individuals with nitrites and/or blood in urine, that EtG can deteriorate over a week. We are surmising thatesterases associated with infection may be causing breakdown of EtG. Heating seems to prevent breakdown, possibly due to neutralizing the bacteria. So, the fact is that heat doesn't cause breakdown of EtG, it actually increases stability.
Questions concerning the AWOL vaporizer:
This “new” method of alcohol abuse known as Alcohol Without Liquid (AWOL) vaporizer is discussed on the web sites. Following is the response from Dr. Ed Barbieri from National Medical Services, Willow Grove PA:, regarding an opinion about how this would affect EtG.
”We have looked into the AWOL machine from the website. Alcohol may enter the bloodstream in the manner that is described on the web site. For ethanol to get to the brain it MUST enter the bloodstream. If ethanol enters the bloodstream, it will be distributed to other tissues throughout the body including the liver and, therefore, will be metabolized. Once metabolized, ethyl glucuronide can be formed and will be eliminated (along with some ethanol) into the urine. In summary, if someone is choosing to take in ethanol in this manner, it will still be metabolized through traditional pathways that may result in positive EtG findings. The EtG results would be dependent upon the time from exposure, amount etc., all of the same things that would need to be considered if alcohol was ingested in a liquid form through drinking.”
What about incidental alcohol use, such as in food, mouthwash, communion wine, etc?
This is an important question and an important issue to understand. Ethanol, unlike other drugs, is fairly common in our environment. It's in food (ie vanilla extract). It's used as solvent in "over-the-counter" meds. It's used in ceremonies (ie communion, etc). It is recommended that anyone being tested (i.e. those in monitoring following alcohol problems) be advised that they should not consume food containing alcohol, avoid OTC meds containing alcohol, mouthwash with alcohol, and/or communion wine or anything else containing alcohol. It is possible in some circumstances that the urine EtG level could exceed the cutoff levels by this type of "non-beverage alcohol" exposure. For more information, see our page that details common environmental considerations for Ethyl Glucuronide testing.
Why Perform EtG / EtS Testing?
Alcohol abuse creates numerous problems:
Alcohol is the most commonly abused drug in the United States.
Alcohol abuse is highly associated with problematic behaviors of all kinds, including:
- Impaired driving
- Physical assault
- Sexual assault
- Other criminal acts
- Anti-social behaviors of all kinds
Alcohol abuse and dependence are highly associated with other substance abuse.
Individuals with alcohol problems have trouble stopping drinking.
Denial and minimization make it hard for alcohol abusers to recognize their drinking problem.
Many excessive drinkers are poorly motivated to stop drinking.
Despite agreement to stop drinking, secret drinking is a common problem.
Episodes of secret drinking are often hard to detect.
EtG testing allows for detection of secret drinking.
When persons with alcohol problems know that secret drinking will be detected, they usually stop drinking.
EtG testing reduces alcohol abuse.
In organized treatment programs, routine testing for drugs of abuse (including EtG alcohol) results in greatly reduced rates of substance abuse.
Drug courts that use EtG testing report greatly reduced alcohol abuse rates:
-Initial EtG tests typically detect drinking in ~50% of participants.
-When EtG testing becomes routine, the drinking rate falls to 5% or less.
EtG testing confirms alcohol abstinence.
When alcohol abusers stop drinking, it is often difficult for others to trust that they are truly sober. EtG testing provides an external verification of abstinence - it allows programs, treatment professionals and families to "trust but verify."
The Testing Process / Procedure
EtG testing is a process similar to other lab-based drugs of abuse testing. The following steps are typically followed:
A chain of custody form is completed
The subject voids into a standard collection cup. The temperature of the urine is checked, using a temperature strip on the collection cup, to assure it is a valid sample.
A urine specimen syringe device is used to collect a sample of the urine.
The syringe device, and related paperwork are sent to the lab. This is easier, cleaner and less expensive than sending a bottle of urine.
The test samples are shipped to our lab by the US Postal Service or by UPS or FedEx. The most economical and effective method of getting your sample to the lab will depend on your location.
Results are typically reported within three days of receipt at the lab.
RESEARCH QUALITY LABORATORY SERVICES
In the United States, alcohol abuse has reached epidemic proportions. The overall risks to physical and mental health can be devastating. More severe are the tens of thousands of fatalities annually which are attributed directly to alcohol intoxication. The costs associated with enforcing laws, prison systems, governmental programs and non-profit funding is exorbitant.
Until recently, testing methods for alcohol consumption have remained unchanged and unreliable. Urine ethanol has it’s flaws such as false positive results. The window of detection for breath alcohol testing is small and always had to be confirmed by laboratory blood testing which may not occur for many hours after suspected consumption.
Our Laboratory has changed the face of alcohol testing industry. We have the capability of measuring consumption up to 80 hours afterward. Ethyl Glucuronide (EtG) and Ethyl Sulfate (EtS) are metabolites produced by the body only after alcohol has been consumed. EtG and EtS are excreted from the body in various ways and our Laboratory is one of the few laboratories in the country able to identify and quantify these two metabolites.
The New Front Runner: EtG & EtS
EtG and EtS are easily quantifiable with Liquid Chromatography Mass Spectrometry not GC/MS and proper measurement of both metabolites can differentiate consumption vs. environmental exposure.
EtG/EtS confirmation is the perfect testing method for ‘Zero Tolerance’ situations and an effective and noninvasive tool for voluntary treatment facilities and school systems.
EtG/EtS can not be masked by illnesses i.e. urinary tract infections, and false positive results from diabetes are eliminated.
The Most Advanced Technology Available
Our Laboratory has the most accurate technology available for the drug and alcohol testing community. Liquid Chromatography Mass Spectrometry (LC/MS/MS) is research quality laboratory equipment, and can accurately quantify substances well below cutoff levels. This technology surpasses Gas Spectrometry, which in the past had been labeled the ‘gold standard’. Western Slope Laboratory currently owns and operates 4 LC/MS/MS and we are constantly investing in our technology.
Collection Process & Shipment
The urine collection device developed by our Laboratory is as innovative as the testing process. An absorbent material encased in a sealable tube. The design provides ample volume of specimen for the lab and is less bulky than urine transport cups. Our collection device minimizes accidental spills or specimens destroyed in transport . Because our Laboratory’s collection devices are compact and lightweight, this reduces transportation costs.
More information on the Ethyl Glucuronide Test
Ethyl Glucuronide urine testing -EtG and EtS metabolite detection services with full quantitation included.
Urine-Based Alcohol Testing
EtG testing PLUS! All EtG testing includes EtS! We have the capability to measure metabolites not measurable by most laboratories in the USA. EtG (ethyl glucuronide) testing alone, offered by virtually every laboratory in the drug and alcohol testing industry, does not provide a dispositive confirmation of alcohol consumption within the detection window of 0 – 80 hours (average of 36-48). Coupling EtG with EtS (ethyl sulfate) does, since the EtG metabolite is often “masked” by urinary tract infections. The ability to detect EtS using LC/MS/MS separates us from other laboratories in the United States. Only LC/MS/MS is capable of doing this!
Our lab has become a leader in alcohol testing—offering services that present unique opportunities for its customers.
Among our many customers, we provides EtG and EtS testing services for other laboratories providing services in the drug and alcohol testing industry. Generally speaking, this is due to the universal use of Gas Mass Spectrometry within the industry. GC/MS cannot be used to detect EtG and EtS.
There is also no wet chemistry/re-agent (EMIT) screening! The industry is seeing a growing number of laboratories offering EtG "screening" as opposed to full testing. The price might be slightly lower, but the accuracy is lower as well. In addition, if the positive results from "screening" have to be confirmed, why screen at all? Send your alcohol tests to use for Ethyl Glucuronide testing, we test every sample!
In addition to the EtG tests, we also offer a wide range of other alcohol tests: urine test for alcohol, as well saliva test for alcohol and breath alcohol test.
For more information on the different types of drug tests, click on one of the links to the left.
Other important information:
Oral Drug Test Detection Times | Drug Alcohol Test