So you’re in the clear, right? Not quite. There are two ways you could hit that 50 ng/mL mark.
You nailed your cover letter and rocked the interview. All that’s standing between you and an awesome new job is a mandatory drug screening. Will that CBD oil you’ve been taking for pain relief cause you to fail the test?
And in 2018, the CDC released a report that found that more than 50 people in Utah were poisoned by CBD products that actually contained synthetic marijuana commonly known as Spice and K2.
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While the information here suggests CBD won’t make anyone fail a drug test, there’s no way to guarantee that. The only way to ensure you will pass a drug test is to abstain from using any sort of CBD product.
How cannabis drug tests work
Different types of drug tests have different detection thresholds, but the type you’re most likely to encounter is the “pee test.” To pass a urine drug test, the amount of THC in your body must be below 50 ng/mL. That’s the cutoff recommended federally by the National Institutes of Health and clinically by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, which helps set industry standards for lab certifications.
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False positives in drug tests are just one of many issues that have arisen as law enforcement authorities attempt to catch up with the rapidly shifting laws around the cannabis industry.
Elizabeth has been in touch with Mr. Conrad, but he is not serving as a witness in her case.
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Many labs have upgraded from GC-MS analysis to a more precise technique called high-performance liquid chromatography, Mr. Houlihan said. But tests using GC-MS are still common, he said, and many of those may be using TFAA.
In June of 2018 , Mark Pennington received troubling news from his ex-girlfriend, with whom he shared custody of their 2-year-old son. She had taken a hair follicle from the boy, she said, and had it analyzed at a lab. A drug test had returned positive for THC, the intoxicating compound in marijuana; evidently their son had been exposed to it, presumably in Mr. Pennington’s presence. He was told that, from then on, he would be permitted to see the child only once a week, and under supervision.
“I can’t even estimate how many people this is going to screw over,” said Mr. Conrad, who has worked on a handful of cases similar to Mr. Pennington’s. (He is not working with Mr. Pennington on the lawsuit against the lab.) In one case Mr. Conrad consulted on, a couple in Florida was charged with marijuana possession after a CBD-infused gummy bear tested positive for THC. Another client was arrested for violating his parole after testing positive for THC, when he claimed he had only used CBD.
But last December, the Farm Bill legalized hemp — cannabis that contains less than 0.3 percent THC. With that, CBD became legal. It can now be found at stores across the country, in everything from tinctures and massage oils to coffee and makeup. Mr. Pennington, who lives in Colorado, where growing hemp for CBD has been legal since 2014 , worked for Colorado Hemp Honey, a company that sells CBD-infused raw honey across the country.
CBD products sold outside of state-licensed marijuana dispensaries are not yet regulated. As a result, many products that claim to contain CBD in fact do not, or they may contain more than the legal limit of THC, according to testing done by the Food and Drug Administration . This could cause some CBD users to test positive for THC, and adds to the confusion surrounding THC testing generally. Dr. Sample said that this was most likely the problem with the CBD product Elizabeth had been using, and likely why her Quest drug test showed that she had used THC. But Elizabeth insisted that the CBD product she purchased did not get her high and did not have any THC.
Barry Sample, the senior director of science and technology at Quest Diagnostics, the biggest purveyor of drug tests in the country, said he was familiar with the problem outlined in the 2012 paper, but said Quest Diagnostics did not use that methodology. “We use a different analytical procedure,” Dr. Sample said.