With the popularity of crime investigation television programs, it is unsurprising how people outside of the medical field are familiar with terms like toxicology and toxicology testing. However, unbeknownst to many, the way toxicology is portrayed on television is vastly different from what really happens in real life.
What Is Toxicology Testing?
A toxicology test is an assessment that aims to determine whether an individual has taken certain substances. Moreover, this type of test reveals the amount and type of legal and illegal medication a person has ingested.
Toxicology testing is used for various different reasons. It can be used in order to determine the viability of an employment candidate. Toxicology testing is also administered in order to monitor a patient’s substance abuse problem.
Toxicology Testing on TV Versus Toxicology Testing in Real Life
Television programs like Crime Scene Investigation or CSI have made the term toxicology testing a familiar phrase for people who are outside of the medical profession. However, unlike in TV shows, a complete and thorough toxicology report is not produced within a couple of hours. It involves multiple test results and several consultations in order to confirm the validity of the testing’s outcome.
In real life, toxicology testing requires a person to allow professionals to collect their blood, urine or other tissues. Blood is collected in different areas of the body in order to obtain more accurate results. The collection of fluids is possibly the fastest step in a toxicology test. It routinely lasts anywhere from 15-20 minutes. The specimens are then sent to experts for testing. The testing can last anywhere from a couple of weeks to a month.
Many foreign substances can be detected by a toxicology assessment. Common legal and illegal medications often can easily be discovered by the said test. The test may detect:
What Are The Different Types Of Toxicology Testing?
Toxicology tests are classified based on the specific purpose of their administration. The four main types of toxicology assessment include:
- Drug testing for employment
- Athletics testing
Toxicology and Substance Abuse Treatment
Toxicology testing is an integral part of a patient’s recovery treatment program. Below are just a few reasons why drug assessment is part of substance abuse therapy:
- Toxicology tests open up a dialogue between physician and patient. This type of testing provides a platform for a physician to thoroughly discuss what could be done in order to prevent a relapse from happening. It is an honest, clear and accurate look into a person’s loyalty to his or her treatment program.