Other causes of failed PEth test for alcohol abuse?

Posted by gjones1956 @gjones1956, Nov 14, 2017

My daughter undergoes periodic peth testing for alchohol abuse. She fails regularly, although swears she drinks NOTHING. We have reason to believe she is telling the truth. Assuming she is indeed not drinking, is there a physical condition or ailment that might produce positive peth tests? She is 29, has enlarged lymph nodes, some kind of mysterious condition that gives her severe hives, etc. We are wondering if some type of autoinflammation or autoimmune condition might explain elevated levels. Our daughter is FINALLY discussing this with her regular doctor but if it is some unusual condition a specialist will be needed. The reason the peth test is required is due to a nasty custody dispute with lots of allegations of misconduct. I just want to know if there is ANYTHING other than alchohol consumption that can lead to positive test results. Any thoughts or knowledge of cases? Thanks for reading.

Liked by livermom

@pethmadness

USDTL is not the only source of PeTH test. Just the more questionable finger prick ones. I highly suggest you start dual testing at quest/request a test/ labcorp site that uses the Blood drawn version from labcorp. I can provide direct proof from my wife that you can fail the finger prick test from usdtl and pass the labcorp one taken minutes apart (drive time). Something in the fingerpick one is screwy. Read my prior posts for other tips. All this said you are still fighting a highly corrupt system but I would sure farther be doing it with conflicting same day PeTH tests than without.

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Yes…..I meant only the dry blood spot test. I have never had a problem with blood draw, or urine, or hair, or nail.

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@johnbishop

Hello @slw2227282, Welcome to Connect. It's hard to believe how the PETH test can be still be used after so much attention and false positives. Hopefully, something can be done.

@toolsd posted an article that might be helpful in an earlier post and may be able to offer more suggestions or help.

Recently written by Dr Skipper.
https://www.centerforprofessionalrecovery.com/specificity-of-phosphatidylethanol-as-a-marker-for-alcoholic-beverage-consumption/
@mllangan1 aslo shared an article in an earlier post and may have other information or suggestions.

Phosphatidylethanol: The Potential Role in Further Evaluating Low Positive Urinary Ethyl Glucuronide and Ethyl Sulfate Results:
https://cdn.prod-carehubs.net/n1/748e8fe697af5de8/uploads/2020/02/PEth-Article-in-ACER.pdf
@slw2227282 is your husband going to any support meetings where he may be able to talk with other people that had similar experiences?

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Hi, I wanted to give everyone an update on my situation. I posted in January and February.
I did have a second False positive PETH. As I stated before I do not drink. I went to rehab for substance abuse.
I have not been released yet from my rehab center back to my State Board.
My only option by my rehab center was to agree to Sober Link 4 times a day. This is a breathalyzer that measures BAC just like law enforcement uses for field sobriety. My results are sent wirelessly to my rehab center daily. This cost $499 for the device plus an Additional $150 per month and I had to sign a year’s contract. I have over 30 days or 120 tests and all are .000 BAC.
My rehab told me that if I had another Positive Peth the BAC results would nullify the Peth.
I wanted to let you know that at least they will admit a possible Positive Peth now. This is a long way forward since last year. Again I now spend $450 per month. I cannot afford this. Breathalyzing 4 times a day is an incredible commitment. If I go out I have to take the device with me. They send me a text 4 times a day and I have a 2 hour window.
I’m convinced the error is in the physical performance of the Peth test. I have done several tests with Toothpaste, Mouthwash ect and I always blow .000 BAC. There is no way the Peth is picking up a true blood level. It is in the way the blood spots are performed that you see various positive. I may never get my license back but I’m going to continue with monitoring so they will have to admit there is such a thing as a false positive.
If anyone thinks your Board might allow the breathalyzer just Google Sober Link. They are located in California. If you You Tube
Sober Link there are several great videos by the company.
Thanks, Stay Safe

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@milo262

Hi, I wanted to give everyone an update on my situation. I posted in January and February.
I did have a second False positive PETH. As I stated before I do not drink. I went to rehab for substance abuse.
I have not been released yet from my rehab center back to my State Board.
My only option by my rehab center was to agree to Sober Link 4 times a day. This is a breathalyzer that measures BAC just like law enforcement uses for field sobriety. My results are sent wirelessly to my rehab center daily. This cost $499 for the device plus an Additional $150 per month and I had to sign a year’s contract. I have over 30 days or 120 tests and all are .000 BAC.
My rehab told me that if I had another Positive Peth the BAC results would nullify the Peth.
I wanted to let you know that at least they will admit a possible Positive Peth now. This is a long way forward since last year. Again I now spend $450 per month. I cannot afford this. Breathalyzing 4 times a day is an incredible commitment. If I go out I have to take the device with me. They send me a text 4 times a day and I have a 2 hour window.
I’m convinced the error is in the physical performance of the Peth test. I have done several tests with Toothpaste, Mouthwash ect and I always blow .000 BAC. There is no way the Peth is picking up a true blood level. It is in the way the blood spots are performed that you see various positive. I may never get my license back but I’m going to continue with monitoring so they will have to admit there is such a thing as a false positive.
If anyone thinks your Board might allow the breathalyzer just Google Sober Link. They are located in California. If you You Tube
Sober Link there are several great videos by the company.
Thanks, Stay Safe

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A word of warning on the soberlink thing… be careful how much you trust it and you need to be extra careful with any hand sanitizer you may be around with all the covid stuff going on – especially do not let it in your car at all. Let me explain why…

My wife got one of these as well after the bad USDTL peth tests. All was good for probably four months of testing 3-4 times a day (at her schedule vs theirs). We had read some bad things about the soberlink and having such bad issues with USDTL we did not trust soberlink either so my wife was doing her own separate tests with a backtrack device prior to doing the soberlink one. All was fine until we went on vacation…

First, my wife's backtrack blows "hot" (like 3x the legal limit hot) but it also does so for me too… and we were both together and neither of us drink… so I told her it had to be a bad backtrack unit and to take the soberlink. Guess what… it goes off too. And it was through the roof too; with no drinking; Stayed that way for 4-5 hours but the decay rate was WAY too high for it to be consumed alcohol. Something major screwy was going on… we just did not know what.

The "analysts" (who have business degrees at best and are not scientists based on talking to them myself) at soberlink are a joke and cannot interpret the results for crap; It is not humanly possible for the human body to reduce alcohol at the rate my wife's results were going down. More so I was seeing the same thing on the backtrack (as were our kids). We had to hire a real expert to argue the test results with the soberlink clowns which we succeeded in but I wanted to know what happened.

Best we (and our expert) could guess was it was us riding in the enclosed car on a 5 hour road trip. My wife and daughters had alcohol based cosmetics in their suitcases and we stopped for lunch in the hot texas sun. My guess is one of them "leaked" into the car cabin and then we breathed in fumes for multiple hours. Based on the device readings… we were all multiple legal limits drunk.

So the punch line is be extra careful about enclosed spaces and anything with alcohol in it. I would be terrified to be taking these tests and being anywhere around hand sanitizer but especially in my car… but also be wary of what may be released into the air from others…

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@milo262

Hi, I wanted to give everyone an update on my situation. I posted in January and February.
I did have a second False positive PETH. As I stated before I do not drink. I went to rehab for substance abuse.
I have not been released yet from my rehab center back to my State Board.
My only option by my rehab center was to agree to Sober Link 4 times a day. This is a breathalyzer that measures BAC just like law enforcement uses for field sobriety. My results are sent wirelessly to my rehab center daily. This cost $499 for the device plus an Additional $150 per month and I had to sign a year’s contract. I have over 30 days or 120 tests and all are .000 BAC.
My rehab told me that if I had another Positive Peth the BAC results would nullify the Peth.
I wanted to let you know that at least they will admit a possible Positive Peth now. This is a long way forward since last year. Again I now spend $450 per month. I cannot afford this. Breathalyzing 4 times a day is an incredible commitment. If I go out I have to take the device with me. They send me a text 4 times a day and I have a 2 hour window.
I’m convinced the error is in the physical performance of the Peth test. I have done several tests with Toothpaste, Mouthwash ect and I always blow .000 BAC. There is no way the Peth is picking up a true blood level. It is in the way the blood spots are performed that you see various positive. I may never get my license back but I’m going to continue with monitoring so they will have to admit there is such a thing as a false positive.
If anyone thinks your Board might allow the breathalyzer just Google Sober Link. They are located in California. If you You Tube
Sober Link there are several great videos by the company.
Thanks, Stay Safe

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I would also caution testing such units with mouthwash… I tried it for "fun" with the backtrack and purple Listerine and I can assure you it will set off a backtrack. It deteriorates really rapidly (way too rapidly to be consumed) but it will set off at least the backtrack device. Did not test this with the soberlink… but I would not try it. And I would not want their "experts" to interpret the results on my behalf it it was for the record…

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Private messages sent to new comers…

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As for the peth test, I believe it’s the fact the spots are not dried properly before packaging… think back to when you got the test… was it sealed up right away so you could initial it… the blood is fermenting. That’s where a result comes from with out even incidental exposure.

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@toolsd

As for the peth test, I believe it’s the fact the spots are not dried properly before packaging… think back to when you got the test… was it sealed up right away so you could initial it… the blood is fermenting. That’s where a result comes from with out even incidental exposure.

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My experience with my American Family Care, where I get my Peth Tests is very disappointing. It is always someone new that I have to remind to not let my finger touch the spot board And to let the sample dry. I mentioned to my provider at rehab and they say it is all on me. My point is if this test is that sensitive to variables WHY are they still using it.

Liked by slw2227282

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Well, it’s an issue that’s really never been fought. They are simply taking advantage of the fact most people forced into taking this test are too vulnerable. Well, eventually there’s going to be people who have nothing to lose… and will therefore fight.

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And the mere notion it’s on YOU to make sure it’s done right… WOW, just wow.

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@toolsd

And the mere notion it’s on YOU to make sure it’s done right… WOW, just wow.

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What so frustrating @tooltoolsd is I know for a fact I have had a false positive but I’m being treated as a relapse. Data and science with follow up tests prove it is impossible for it not to be a false positive. If it’s not a false positive then the two follow up tests (intravenous/nail etg) then both have to be false negatives. It cant go both ways? Is this not being brought up the chain at all in the scientific community? For some cases specifically the FAA?

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It has been brought up the chain… and documented! So when the music stops, they ain’t gonna have a chair…

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@toolsd

It has been brought up the chain… and documented! So when the music stops, they ain’t gonna have a chair…

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My husband successfully went through the HIMS program and is now a peer monitor for pilots (his airline requested him to be one). He has jumped through all the hoops and has been in compliance since day 1 of signing his HIMS agreement. He is six years sober as of this week. He works for an overseas carrier and their avmed department has always done the peth test collection and sent it to USDTL here in the states. All his tests have been negative. As of Covid, majority of flying is grounded. The company requested him to do a Peth test a few weeks ago. On the USDTL site he found a collection site in our area. Fast forward to this week, the test came back at 93ng. ALL other tests have been negatives (urine, ctg) and I KNOW he has had ZERO alcohol. The person administering the test was not familiar with the test and kept having to ask her supervisor how to do it. It just made us wonder if her inexperience with administering the test caused a positive result. So my husband and I decided to watch the official collection procedures on the USDTL site, and now we can see there are glaring problems on how she did the test. Every step of the way she did it incorrectly. My husband went to the same testing site yesterday, had them redo the test BUT do a blood draw and also do a hair test. He also did another Peth test (dry blood spot) today with a different company USDTL recommended from their site. Today as well he did a blood draw for a Peth test through Labcorp. So 4 Peth tests total in under 2 weeks, plus the add on of the hair sample.
USDTL – will be responsible for 3 more additional tests. The blood draw and hair taken yesterday by the first company and the dry blood spot taken today by a different company
Labcorp – will be responsible for one blood draw test taken today.
There are major problems that courts and companies are relying on just this one test and throwing everything else to the wayside. Since hair / nails go back 3 months you would think that this would invalidate the Peth.
Even on USDTL site it has the slogan "Alcohol Testing Think 3-3-3" which means using different testing methods like Urine, Blood, Hair / Nails for evaluation.
My husband told me that the other recommended USDTL company he went to this morning, he had to walk the woman on how to do the test! Unbelievable. We are both upset at the ignorance of the people collecting do the dry blood spot test. And mind you this USDTL recommending these companies. I think we should all carefully document how the test is done each and every time. If there is enough data then hopefully we can see a pattern.
Upon evaluating the USDTL instruction video, why is the tester / patient washing their hands and then touching other papers and pen, this sets the test up for contamination. Administrative stuff should all be done first, then wash hands, then isopropyl pad, then the lancet.

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Private message sent

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@rocketsparten

My husband successfully went through the HIMS program and is now a peer monitor for pilots (his airline requested him to be one). He has jumped through all the hoops and has been in compliance since day 1 of signing his HIMS agreement. He is six years sober as of this week. He works for an overseas carrier and their avmed department has always done the peth test collection and sent it to USDTL here in the states. All his tests have been negative. As of Covid, majority of flying is grounded. The company requested him to do a Peth test a few weeks ago. On the USDTL site he found a collection site in our area. Fast forward to this week, the test came back at 93ng. ALL other tests have been negatives (urine, ctg) and I KNOW he has had ZERO alcohol. The person administering the test was not familiar with the test and kept having to ask her supervisor how to do it. It just made us wonder if her inexperience with administering the test caused a positive result. So my husband and I decided to watch the official collection procedures on the USDTL site, and now we can see there are glaring problems on how she did the test. Every step of the way she did it incorrectly. My husband went to the same testing site yesterday, had them redo the test BUT do a blood draw and also do a hair test. He also did another Peth test (dry blood spot) today with a different company USDTL recommended from their site. Today as well he did a blood draw for a Peth test through Labcorp. So 4 Peth tests total in under 2 weeks, plus the add on of the hair sample.
USDTL – will be responsible for 3 more additional tests. The blood draw and hair taken yesterday by the first company and the dry blood spot taken today by a different company
Labcorp – will be responsible for one blood draw test taken today.
There are major problems that courts and companies are relying on just this one test and throwing everything else to the wayside. Since hair / nails go back 3 months you would think that this would invalidate the Peth.
Even on USDTL site it has the slogan "Alcohol Testing Think 3-3-3" which means using different testing methods like Urine, Blood, Hair / Nails for evaluation.
My husband told me that the other recommended USDTL company he went to this morning, he had to walk the woman on how to do the test! Unbelievable. We are both upset at the ignorance of the people collecting do the dry blood spot test. And mind you this USDTL recommending these companies. I think we should all carefully document how the test is done each and every time. If there is enough data then hopefully we can see a pattern.
Upon evaluating the USDTL instruction video, why is the tester / patient washing their hands and then touching other papers and pen, this sets the test up for contamination. Administrative stuff should all be done first, then wash hands, then isopropyl pad, then the lancet.

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There is a serious issue with the PEth dried blood spot testing that is leading to multiple false positives. Talk to your AME’s, the FAA, AOPA anyone who will listen and let them know what is going on. Eventually they will realize this isn’t a bunch of lying pilots but these specific dried blood spot tests are prone to false positives. If you would like you can DM me to talk or get guidance on how I am addressing my issue with a lawyer.

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Same here. Feel free to private message me and we can talk via phone. I have worked all my life for this airline career and I'm not about to have some faulty test ruin all those years of hard work and education.

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