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Want to know about Ethyl Glucuronide test. How much alcohol consumption would this indicate, if consumed 8 hrs before?

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Practicing since : 2004
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This inquiry is about toxicology reports involving drug screening results. A positive urine ETG test for alcohol that that yields a saturation level of 10,000 nanograms per mileiter. Aproximately how much alcohol consumption would this indicate, assuming the alcohol was consumed 8 hrs prior to the test? Please respond in laymans terms too. (Example: a dose of Ziquill nighttime cold and sleep med? or a glass of wine? a beer or 6 beers? a fifth of whiskey?) Also, how much consumption 8 hrs prior to testing would 1000 ng indicate. Assume the subject was a 36yr old female weighing about 125lbs and 5' 7'' tall. This is NOT about a pending court case and does not have to be extremely spicific. Just a general range of interpretation of the above metioned test results would be sufficient.
Posted Thu, 19 Sep 2013 in Smoking and Alcohol Addiction
Answered by Dr. Ashish Mittal 5 hours later
Brief Answer:
ETG test as a biomarker test

Detailed Answer:
Thanks for your query.
I appreciate your efforts for medical consultation in so much distress.

ETG test called as Ethyl Glucuronide (EtG) test. It is a biomarker test that detects the presence of ethyl glucuronide in urine samples. The EtG test has become known as the “80 hour test” for detecting any amount of consumed ethyl alcohol.

The EtG test is just one of many biomarker tests available to confirm the presence of alcohol in urine samples. These tests are used to document abstinence and detect relapse. They can also be used in clinical settings to screen for drinking problems, evaluate interventions for alcohol problems and motivate changes in drinking behavior.

Factors to determine the approximate period and EtG value:
-Volume of alcohol consumed
-Time between each drink.
-Metabolic rate of person
-Liver function status

This test is more sensitive for use of alcohol. But it is difficult to estimate amount of alcohol use with its help because of above factors affecting EtG values in different individuals. It can quantify alcohol as asked by you in query. As EtG is a sensitive test to detect alcohol, but less specific to quantify amount of alcohol used.

As a Rough estimate a person that consumes 3 drinks (One Standard Drink is equivalent to: 1 peg (30 ml) whiskey/Vodka = ½ bottle of Standard Beer = ¼ bottle of Strong Beer = 1 glass of 125 ml of table wine = 1 glass of 60 ml fortified wine) can only have a detectable level of EtG for approximately 20 to 24 hours. The levels peak at approximately 9 hours with an EtG level around 15,000 ng/mL.

EtG will come positive only with substance containing Ethyl Alcohol. It will not come positive with sleeping pills.

I hope this information has been both informative and helpful for you. In case of any doubt, I will be available for follow ups.

Wish you good health.
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