- CBD Drug Test
- Cannabidiol (CBD) Vs.Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC)
- Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC)
- What tests exist to detect tetrahydrocannabinol?
- What factors can lead to a positive drug test?
- [UPDATE] Follow-up On Preliminary THC Drug Test Study
CBD Drug Test
When a product has any ties to marijuana, it’s natural to receive questions like, “Will I fail a drug test if I use this product?” As a health professional it is important that, whichever CBD products you recommend, you definitively know the answer. With CBD CLINIC™ products, that answer is an emphatic ‘No!’
Here’s what your patients need to know regarding cannabidiol (CBD), tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and drugs testing…
Cannabidiol (CBD) Vs.Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC)
Cannabidiol fever has understandably swept through the nation. The Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018 – aka the Farm Bill – bought changes to legalize products containing “no more than 0.3 percent THC on a dry weight basis or that are approved by FDA.”
This has led to a broad range of readily available products. Yet, CBD products vary in the compounds they contain. With the concern over possible drug test failure, discussing these differences matters. There are 3 options on the general market: isolate, broad spectrum, and full spectrum cannabinoids.
As the name suggests, an isolate is a single compound only. During processing, the other cannabinoids, flavonoids and terpenes are removed to leave pure cannabidiol. CBD is not psychoactive as it is free of the mind-altering compound, tetrahydrocannabinol.
Full Spectrum CBD
Full Spectrum CBD contains various plant substances including cannabinoids, essential oils, terpenes, and THC. Preliminary research suggests that all of these plant components work together to create a synergy commonly referred to as “the entourage effect.” Put simply, they can theoretically enhance their therapeutic benefits by complimenting and balancing one another. To remain within the law, its tetrahydrocannabinol content must be below 0.3 percent. However, being legal doesn’t necessarily equate to passing a THC drug test.
Broad Spectrum CBD
Broad Spectrum CBD is a blend of the aforementioned products on the market.
While the THC is removed from the product, other important compounds remain intact, thus consumers can still potentially benefit from the entourage effect without worrying about failing a THC drug test.
This is why CBDCLINIC™ utilizes Broad Spectrum oil or extract in every product, particularly our CBD massage oil.
Tetrahydrocannabinol is the psychoactive part of the cannabis plant. This is the compound that testing aims to detect.
What tests exist to detect tetrahydrocannabinol?
There are a range of tests used to detect the presence of THC including urine, saliva (oral fluid), hair, and blood.
A simple urine test is the preferred THC screening method. Within five days, the vast majority of THC has been eliminated by the body, 20% through urinary excretion. A sample that contains greater than 50 nanograms per milliliter (ng/ml) is deemed positive.
The saliva test is fast and non-invasive and usually easy to perform. However, if there is a lack of oral fluid the test can be difficult. To complicate matters, food and other techniques designed to increase the production of saliva can affect the concentration of THC. According to the study Drug Testing in Oral Fluid the cut off for THC, below which a test is considered negative, is 1.9 or 2 ng/mL depending on the assessment used.
However, saliva testing can result in false positives so a secondary test may be necessary.
Using a hair sample for THC detection is suited to those with a chronic low-use history. This form of testing may identify those whose urinary assessments are normal. Its detection window is “approximately 1 month per half inch of hair. Thus, a 1.5 inch section of hair captures a 90-day window of drug use.” However, drugs can be incorporated into hair through the environment, potentially leading to non-users displaying a positive result.
Blood and Plasma
THC is detectable in the blood almost immediately after smoking cannabis. Although it can be discerned within plasma for at least two hours afterward, concentration then begins to fall. Levels routinely decline to around 2 ng/ml within four to six hours. A study in the journal Clinical Chemistry noted that only 30% detection occurred in plasma after 22 hours. If ingested, however, peak levels occur at four to six hours following consumption. In Colorado and Washington, 5 ng/ml whole blood THC is considered the point of impairment.
If a test aims to assess how much THC a person has consumed, according to a Centers For Diseases Control and Prevention (CDC) statement, “Only blood sample measurements are likely to correlate with a person’s degree of exposure.”
What factors can lead to a positive drug test?
A drug test is targeted towards identifying illicit compounds. In many states, THC is such a substance but CBD is not. Therefore, a CBD drug test is not something you need worry about.
Creams, oils and lotions that contain full spectrum CBD also contain THC. If enough tetrahydrocannabinol is present, the theoretical possibility exists for sufficient accumulation to trigger a positive test. When asked about this, Jamie Corroon, a postdoctoral fellow and the founder of the Center for Medical Cannabis Education, says, “It’s possible, but highly unlikely.”
Due to its importance, research into this area has been conducted. A small study showed that regular and intense applications of THC-containing topicals did not produce a single positive blood or urine sample.
Additionally, the CBD CLINIC Specific preliminary study tested three internal employees who do not smoke or ingest THC. Their baselines were assessed and confirmed no THC was present. Fourteen grams (0.5 oz) of ointment containing 64 mg of CBD and trace amounts of THC was applied two to three times per day. Follow up urinary testing confirmed there was zero THC present. The obvious conclusion was that CBD that contains trace amounts of tetrahydrocannabinol does not elicit a positive THC urine test.
There are a range of ways to get cannabidiol into the body, but many also come with an unwanted THC load. While smoking is by far the preferred method for cannabis aficionados and is an option for those seeking to introduce CBD, preparing home-cooked desserts (think cookies or cake), drizzling infused oil over popcorn or pasta, buying commercially produced edibles (where legal), or choosing infused drinks like tea and sparkling water are also options.
However, even when the source is from the seemingly innocuous seeds or oil from the hemp plant, there may be risk for a positive test. The study Evaluating The Impact of Hemp Food Consumption on Workplace Drug Tests found that a daily 0.6 mg dose of THC from this source led to one specimen screening positive.
The safe CBD option
It’s important to understand THC drug testing and which factors may lead to a positive result, so you can advise your patients correctly. After all, a failed drug test is a serious problem with potential workplace and legal ramifications.
[update] As CBD isolates and broad-spectrum contain no THC, there is simply no risk of failing a workplace, roadside or other tetrahydrocannabinol drug test. CBD CLINIC products contain CBD broad spectrum. It’s highly unlikely that your patients could fail a drug test by using this product for the following reasons:
- None of our employees who tested the products failed their THC drug test: As mentioned above, we conducted an internal study with our employees using broad spectrum products. None of them failed the THC drug test.
- Our products are NOT transdermal: The products do not enter the bloodstream. They enter the top layers of the skin only.