Intercept® Oral Fluid Drug Test FAQs

The following are frequently asked questions about OraSure Technologies' Intercept® Oral Fluid Drug Test. For additional information, please contact Customer Care.

  1. Which drugs can you detect in oral fluid?
  2. How does the detection window for oral fluid testing compare with other methods?
  3. What methodology do you employ?
  4. How is the data reported?
  5. Can an oral fluid test be beaten?
  6. Who collects the sample?
  7. How much does it cost?
  8. What is the turnaround time?
  9. Isn't oral fluid a hazardous fluid?
  10. How do you know if you have enough sample to test?
  11. How do I get more information?
  1. Which drugs can you detect in oral fluid?
    The Intercept® oral fluid drug testing service can detect the NIDA-5 drug panel (marijuana, cocaine, opiates, amphetamines/methamphetamines, and PCP) which represent the most common drugs requested by employers for workplace drug testing. Additional drug tests include barbiturates, methadone and benzodiazepines.

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  2. How does the detection window for oral fluid testing compare with other methods?
    Just like traditional urine testing, the window in oral fluid testing is different for each drug. Of most significance is that oral fluid testing identifies recent usage - during the first four hours after drug use - that can be missed by urine testing. For most drugs, the window of detection in oral fluid is about one to three days. By contrast, urine testing relies on drug metabolites retained in the body's waste supply and may detect some drugs for a longer period.

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  3. What methodology do you employ?
    Oral fluid samples are first screened in a laboratory using enzyme immunoassay (EIA) technology, proven reliable for routine drug testing. Any samples that test positive in the screening process are then subjected to gas chromatography / mass spectrometry (GC/MS) or liquid chromatography/ mass spectrometry/ mass spectrometry (LC/MS/MS) , the latest in drug confirmation technology. This tandem "MS", as it is called, provides the most sensitive fingerprint of the drug target available.

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  4. How is the data reported?
    As with all laboratory-based testing, results are logged in a computerized information system and electronically reported to the designated party and Medical Review Officer, if appropriate.

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  5. Can an oral fluid test be beaten?
    We have studied a wide range of adulterants and have not found any that can beat our oral fluid drug test system. Of course, donors may attempt to introduce something onto the pad or collection vial. This risk is highly unlikely since every collection is directly and easily observed. Dilution tactics often employed to beat urine tests are not effective in oral fluid testing.

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  6. Who collects the sample?
    The beauty of oral fluid testing is that the donor collects his or her own sample under direct visual supervision. The donor places the collection pad in his or her cheek and gum for at least two minutes. Once the absorbent collection pad is saturated, it is placed in a vial, the handle of the collection device is snapped off at the rim of the vial, the vial is sealed, and the donor initials the seal. The entire process takes just 5 minutes.

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  7. How much does it cost?
    Oral fluid can be significantly less than traditional urine testing. The economic advantage of the Intercept® Oral Fluid Drug Test is that it can reduce the cost of collection processes, scheduling fees, and the need for same-gender personnel for observed collection.

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  8. What is the turnaround time?
    Most of our lab partners receive samples via overnight courier, tests them the day they arrive and reports negative results by early afternoon. Positive results are confirmed, reviewed and reported usually within 72 hours of receipt.

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  9. Isn't oral fluid a hazardous fluid?
    No. Because the testing methodology is not classified as a "dental process," OSHA does not consider oral fluid collections hazardous. In addition, oral fluid specimens are not subject to the same handling and disposal issues that face other body fluids.

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  10. How do you know if you have enough sample to test?
    If the donor keeps the collection pad in his or her mouth for at least two minutes, as indicated on the package, there is enough to test. The collection pad is treated with salts to stimulate oral fluid secretion, making the process very reliable. In fact, based on experience from life insurance testing, only 1 in 10,000 samples report as insufficient for testing.

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  11. How do I get more information?
    Contact our Customer Care Department for more detailed information at 1-800-869-3538.

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The information provided on this website is intended only for the residents of the United States. The products discussed herein may have different labeling in different countries and may not be for sale in all other countries.