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How the most common drugs can cheat on a drug test: doctors gave an honest answer

Date: December 3, 2023 Time: 17:57:02

In social networks they fear that after so many medications with which we treat the most common diseases, there are many possibilities of giving a positive drug test.

Photo: Shutterstock

“My husband needed to renew his gun license,” says a KP.RU reader. -To do this, he must urinate for a drug test. We read horror stories on the Internet: they say that the most harmless drugs can give a positive result. And my husband took Corvalol a few weeks ago. For safety, they themselves bought test strips for rapid analysis of barbiturates at the pharmacy; they say they are found more frequently. And our test showed its presence!

How is that? – the reader is perplexed. In social networks they fear that after so many medications with which we treat the most common diseases, there are many possibilities of giving a positive drug test. But such an analysis is necessary not only for a weapons permit. In some cases, you cannot do without it to obtain and replace a driver’s license. How serious the problem is and how to solve it, found out KP.RU.


First of all, let’s reassure: all motorists without exception do not need to take a drug test now. Many have heard of the scandalous draft order of the Ministry of Health, which planned to introduce such a duty. However, in the end, the department approved the document in a different version. Today, the procedure for passing a medical examination to obtain or replace a driver’s license is regulated by the order of the Ministry of Health of the Russian Federation dated November 24, 2021 No. 1092n. These are the cases in which a test for the determination of psychoactive substances in urine is required (subsection 8 of paragraph 4 of the order):

– if, during the medical examination, a psychiatrist-narcologist finds signs of drug disorders;

– if the driver has lost his license due to drunk driving, refusing a medical examination, committing a “drunk” accident. When the term of the sanction has expired, to return the driver’s license, it is necessary to pass a full medical examination, in addition to passing a urine test.

As for the signs by which a narcologist can suspect evil and send for examination anyone who receives or changes the rights, among the symptoms, for example, are the following:

– lethargy, drowsiness or agitation;

– acceleration or slowing down of breathing;

– constriction or dilation of the pupils;

– slow reaction of the pupils to light;

– staggering when walking with quick turns;

– errors in the execution of coordination tests;

– tremor of the eyelids and (or) tongue, hands;

– signs of intravenous administration of drugs (substances), including injection marks;

– a number of other symptoms.

In some cases, a drug test is required to obtain and replace a driver’s license.

Photo: Shutterstock


At the request of KP.RU, experts from the Vrachu.ru distance medical education service studied Russian and foreign data sources. The experts took as a basis a set of substances that recognize test systems for the determination of drugs in urine. This list was compared with the compositions of the most used drugs. And also with scientific data on the possibility of positive and false positive reactions in tests for psychoactive substances.

I. Drugs with a positive result for psychoactive substances

1. All preparations containing alcohol. Of the most popular:

– sedatives: tinctures of calendula, valerian, a preparation based on a liquid extract of novopasite;

– expectorants for cough based on a hydroalcoholic extract of medicinal plants;

– diuretics (diuretics) based on a hydroalcoholic extract of medicinal plant materials;

– adaptogens: tincture of Eleutherococcus.

2. Preparations containing barbiturates and benzodiazepines (for example: valocordin, valoserdine, trialgin, sedalgin, andipal, corvalol, etc.).

3. Codeine-containing preparations (eg pentalgin-N, nurofen plus, codelac, solpadeine).

! Important: There is no information in the sources on how many of these drugs give positive results in urine tests for psychoactive substances. “The list is compiled only on the basis of the content of the substances themselves in the composition of the preparations,” experts emphasize.

II. Drugs that can give positive and false positive results according to scientific studies

– Ibuprofen, riboflavin: possible false positive result for cannabinoids.

– Ranitidine, omeprazole, ephedrine, amantadine, labetalol, metformin, ibuprofen: false positive for amphetamine.

– Verapamil, rifampicin, ciprofloxacin, levofloxacin: Possibly positive for opioids.

– Some slimming drugs contain psychotropic substances and test positive for amphetamines.

– Some combination cold medicines containing phenylephrine, chlorpheniramine, pheniramine (eg Theraflu, Fervex, Lorraine) may test positive for amphetamine.

– Ambroxol – possibly positive for LSD.


Patients are always advised to carefully read the instructions for the drug. It indicates what active ingredients the medicine contains. For example, if you see that codeine, phenylephrine, chlorphenamine, pheniramine are indicated, all this means that after taking the drug there is a risk of getting a positive test for psychoactive substances.

At the same time, some powerful components, for example, benzodiazepines or barbiturates, have many different types and are not indicated by a general term in the instructions. Our list (above) shows the most common drugs of this type.


Be sure to tell your doctor about any medications you are taking.

The list of drugs that can give positive and false positive results in tests for psychoactive substances, as we see, is long. And these are only the most popular drugs. But many people, especially older people, have many diseases and take more than one type of pill. How can they make sure they don’t fly with a driver’s license or gun permit?

For feedback and advice, we turned to the toxicologist, science popularizer Alexei Vodovozov.

– In fact, the problem is solved quite simply, – says the expert. – When you go for an examination to a narcologist (that is, he, we remember, sends urine for analysis. – Ed.), be sure to tell him: what drugs you are taking. The doctor will immediately determine which of them can be “turned on” in the analysis of psychoactive substances. And he will tell you: how long he should postpone the tests.

From the editor: the timing of detection of psychoactive substances in the urine can be very different. It depends on the drug, health status, body weight, age of the person, and other factors. The narcologist during the examination takes all this into account. According to scientific studies, barbiturates, benzodiazepines (up to three weeks) and cannabinoids (up to six weeks) are the ones that “stay” the longest.

* This website provides news content gathered from various internet sources. It is crucial to understand that we are not responsible for the accuracy, completeness, or reliability of the information presented Read More

Puck Henry
Puck Henry
Puck Henry is an editor for ePrimefeed covering all types of news.

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