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What is a urine drug screen (UDS)?

  • Published: 12/28/2022
  • Updated: 12/28/2022

A urine drug screen, also known as a UDS, is a type of test used to detect the presence of certain drugs in someone’s system. It is a relatively simple process that involves providing a sample of urine for testing.

Urine drug screens measure the amount of specific drugs or metabolites in an individual’s urine. The substances that are being measured are usually illicit substances such as opiates, cocaine, marijuana and amphetamines — but they can also be legal medications (such as Xanax).

The screening process is typically quick and easy - it only takes several minutes to perform the actual test - but results may take up to 24-48 hours depending on the laboratory used for analysis. Urine tests do not reveal exact levels of intoxication; rather they indicate whether or not any drug was detected at all.

UDS tests have become increasingly popular due to their accuracy and reliability when it comes to identifying potential substance abuse issues among individuals who need monitoring because of work requirements or involvement with law enforcement agencies. Employers often require these types of tests among employees who belong in certain professions such as pilots, medical practitioners and those working with hazardous materials; while courts may conduct UDS screenings on repeat offenders or individuals placed under probationary terms supervised by parole officers.

Overall, a urine drug screen provides an accurate reading on whether drugs were present at some point leading up to the day they took the test - though there is no guarantee that it will capture recent consumption due to how quickly one metabolizes different substances after consumption!