The tests that employers request for their employees are panel drug tests. The most commonly requested or used tests are the 5 or 10 panel drug test. One panel equals one drug the sample is tested for. A 5 panel drug test for example, would examine the specimen for THC, Cocaine, Phencyclidine, Opiates, and Amphetamines.

Why Employers Should Consider More Than The 5 Panel Drug Test 

The most common drug test used by employers is the 5-panel. But higher panels allow for the testing of a larger variety of drugs. Employers may customize the tests if they want to check for specific drugs. 

Here are a few examples of the various drug test panels. 

6 Panel Drug Test 

A 6 panel drug test adds on benzodiazepines to the other 5 test panels. Benzodiazepines are drugs that treat anxiety, seizures, and panic attacks among other conditions. These drugs can include Valium and Klonopin, which can cause dizziness and weakness. So testing for benzodiazepine abuse is reasonable for many industries. 

7 Panel Drug Test 

The 7 panel drug test will add on both benzodiazepines and barbiturates. These are sedative or hypnotic drugs used to reduce the symptoms of insomnia. They are also used to decrease anxiety. Common barbiturates include Amytal, Butisol, and Seconal. These medications can also cause drowsiness and confusion. So the abuse of barbiturates should be a concern for most business owners. 

8 Panel Drug Test 

The 8 panel drug test adds on Quaaludes along with benzodiazepines and barbiturates. Quaalude is the brand name for methaqualone. While it isn’t abused often in North America, this drug is recreationally  used as an aphrodisiac or muscle relaxer. Doctors prescribe quaaludes as a sedative or anxiolytic. Some industries may not need to test for this drug, but it is an available option. 

9 Panel Drug Test 

A 9 panel drug test will usually include all the above drugs as well as propoxyphene. This highly addictive drug also known as Darvon is used as a pain reliever. When abused, it can cause dangerous side effects such as a slowed heart rate, fainting, and seizures. It is wise for industries that use heavy machinery to test for propoxyphene abuse. This ensures there are no accidents or injuries due to these side effects. 

10 Panel Drug Test 

The 10 panel drug test adds on methadone. This long acting opioid painkiller is often used to treat individuals addicted to heroin. When used as directed it is very useful in treating opioid addiction, but it is also very addictive. The side effects of this drug can include numbness and extreme exhaustion. 

11 Panel Drug Test 

The 11 panel drug test is a little different from the others. It includes the same panels as the 8 panel drug test, but also adds on Methadone, Oxycodone, and Tricyclic Antidepressants, also known as TCAs. TCAs are not as popular now due to their various side effects. They can cause anxiety, exhaustion, and moderate cognitive impairment. 

12 Panel Drug Test 

The 12 panel drug test includes everything in the 10 panel test. It also adds on Percocet and Oxycodone, as well as Ecstasy and MDMA. This panel drug test may also be used to test for extra opiates or painkillers. It is a very comprehensive drug test and is often used in industries that have a lot of responsibility. 

Do You Need More Information About The Different Drug Test Panels? 

If you have always used the same 5 panel test, and still have concerns about drug use among your employees, our team can help. We can provide you with more information about the different types of drug test panels and which would be most effective for your needs. Visit our website today for more details.

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