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A primer on definitive gas and liquid chromatography drug testing: What clinicians need to know

Amadeo Pesce, PhD, Kenneth L. Kirsh, PhD, Angela Huskey, PharmD, CPE, Steven D. Passik, PhD, Catherine A. Hammett-Stabler, PhD

Abstract


Objective: To describe the differences between mass spectrometry technologies and compare and contrast them with immunoassay techniques of urine drug testing (UDT). Highlight the potential importance of the differences among these technologies for clinicians so as to allow them make decisions in their use in patient care.

Methods: Review of mass spectrometry techniques, including gas chromatography, liquid chromatography, and time-of-flight techniques.

Results: The potential clinical implications of these technologies stemming from their scope and accuracy are presented.

Significance: UDT is an important clinical tool, though there are differences in technology and testing processes with important implications for clinical decision making. It is crucial, therefore, that clinicians have an understanding of the technologies behind the tests they order, so that their interpretation and use of results are based on an understanding of the strengths and weaknesses of the technologies used.


Keywords


mass spectrometry, urine drug testing, monitoring

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References


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DOI: https://doi.org/10.5055/jom.2015.0249

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