CBD and Drug Tests. Can a Cannabidiol user test Positive for Marijuana

While a few states have legalized recreational marijuana, and many others have legalized medical marijuana, not all employers feel that the use of the drug is appropriate for their employees. Many employers still require pre-employment drug screenings and others require random drug tests as part of continued employment. Because of this, many people worry about such testing and the effect it might have on their potential and current employment opportunities.

However, if you are using CBD, you might not have to worry as much as a person who is using traditional marijuana. CBD has numerous benefits. It has shown effective as a pain reliever, good at relieving stress and inflammation, as an anti-seizure medication, and helps with many other conditions. But if you take a CBD product with vape pens, will you test positive for marijuana?

Drug Testing for Cannabis

Most employers utilize drug screening companies that follow Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) guidelines for what to test and what causes a positive result. THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) is the most widely recognized cannabinoid in marijuana and is responsible for the euphoric, psychoactive feeling. These drug tests are made to detect THC and the metabolites it produces. This primary metabolite is 11-nor-delta 9 – carboxy-THC (THC-COOH).

SAMHSA has set the cutoff for a positive result for this metabolite at 50 mg/mL. If an amount greater than 50 ng/mL is detected, a separate Gas Chromatography/Mass Spectrometry (GC/MS) screen is performed to verify the positive urine screen. This screening looks specifically for the 11-nor-THC-COOH metabolite and the cutoff for a positive result is 15bng/mL.

The thing to keep in mind is that the urine drug screen checking for THC-COOH typically does not pick up other cannabinoid metabolites. That’s the good news for those who use dry herb vaporizers to consume their CBD.

Here’s Where Things Could Go Wrong

Most CBD products, be they oils, tinctures, or topical products can contain a minimum amount of THC. This is usually undetectable at the small doses recommended to patients and users consuming less than 1000 mg per day. However, those who consume more than 1000 mg of CBD can consume 3-6 mg of THC per day, if the CBD used still contains THC. This can, unfortunately, result in a positive drug test, but typically only in 11% to 23% of screenings. The alternative to low THC products is provided by companies who also offer products formulated with pure CBD isolate containing zero THC.

Why do most CBD products contain a small amount of THC? Well, it’s something called the entourage effect. This is the belief that THC and CBD cannabinoids work better in conjunction with one another than all by their lonesome. So, a small amount of THC may be present to increase the efficacy of some CBD product.

Buyer Beware

The market for CBD products is an emerging one, but the Food and Drug Administration does have regulatory control. They have sent letters to companies whose products’ CBD content did not reflect what was on the label. Your best bet is to research the company’s product thoroughly – examine laboratory tests, if necessary, request them. This is the best way to ensure that you are getting the amount of CBD the company is claiming. This applies to the amount of THC in the product as well, even if it is negligible. In order to avoid a false positive, you should look for CBD oil product with the minimum amount of THC possible.

The Takeaway

If you are using a CBD oil product – either a topical, tincture or possible vaporizing CBD oils, ultimately, the dosage is key to avoid a positive test result. While higher dosage might result in a positive test, the chances are low if you stick to trusted CBD products. Just make sure that the product you are consuming is labeled correctly and that you are taking it in the manner directed and you need not worry about a positive drug test result.


Author: Michael Jacobs

Michael is a marketing and creative content specialist at GotVape.com with a primary focus on customer satisfaction. Technology and fitness combined with healthy lifestyle obsession are his main talking points.