More and more companies are conducting drug tests on their current employees as well as potential new hires. This can help a company avoid hiring the wrong person who could end up being fired or be dangerous on the job. When it comes to drug test results, obviously a company would like to see negative test results. But positive cases can happen too. There is a third result that is less common, but it can happen. This is that the results would be inconclusive. Continue reading to find out what an inconclusive test can mean and what the next steps should be.

What do Inconclusive Drug Test Results Mean?

With drug test results, positive means that a certain amount of concentration of the substances tested for was detected. Negative means that the concentration of the substance was too low for the specific cut-off level of the test. In other words, the lab can not factually determine whether the test is negative or positive. This could potentially mean a few things about the test or the individual taking the test.

How Do Inconclusive Drug Testing Results Happen?

There are a couple ways that a drug test can end up inconclusive. First off, it may be the result of a poor quality test. When drug testing employees, it is important to use quality tests purchased from a reputable lab or provider. Alternatively, you can use a lab that uses proper testing and procedures for accurate testing. A second possible cause of inconclusive test results comes from the person taking the test tampering with the sample. A common way that some people may try to tamper with drug tests is by using adulterants.

These are chemicals that can alter or scramble a sample when mixed in during a test. There are multiple household chemicals and products that may be used to do this. This could also be done if an individual takes a product that tries to dilute urine to mess up the test results, which is called internal adulteration. Internal adulteration may also be done by an individual drinking copious amounts of water in attempts to flush their system.

Should The Employee Be Retested For Drugs?

In the case of an inconclusive drug test, a company may wonder if they should retest the employee. Well, the short answer in most cases is yes. A simple retest helps to ensure that the test can get an actual and accurate result. If a retest is not done during the hiring process, it could lead to an employee causing issues or getting fired because they were actually using substances the whole time.

Some companies may do a drug test after an accident or injury at work. If the drug test is immediate, it will often make it difficult for the employee to tamper with the sample, but if it is inconclusive, it cannot hurt to retest to make sure. It is much better to err on the side of caution and make sure that an actual result is achieved, instead of just glossing over it like it is a negative.

Looking for a Quality Solution for Your Drug Testing Needs?

If you are looking for accurate and reliable tests that can be done during the hiring process or in the event of an accident, then Soteria Screening Labs can help. We offer a wide array of drug tests, including 7-10 panel urine tests, hair follicle testing, and saliva testing. We can provide everything that you will need to do drug tests onsite or can have them sent to us for extremely accurate results. If you have any questions, you can reach us at (202) 679-6670 or at

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