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In the mid to late s, there were many studies done investigating this very question. Some people were concerned that secondhand pot smoke would cause a non-user to fail a drug test. Concern was raised again in more recent years the last 10 years due to the fact that marijuana is much more potent that it was in the s and s. A new string of studies have been done in more recent times to explore this concern again. We are going to look at three studies. In the first studysix drug-free non-smokers were seated alternating with six experienced cannabis smokers in a sealed chamber.
The cannabis smokers smoked 5. Session No. With ventilation, the exposure levels were substantially reduced. The authors state that positive tests are likely to be rare, limited to the hours immediately post-exposure, and are likely to occur only under environmental circumstances where exposure is obvious a very confined space with little to no ventilation.
The second study looks at oral fluid drug testing. The researchers performed two studies. This tells us two things regarding passive THC exposure in oral fluid.
First, performing an oral fluid test on an individual while THC smoke is in the air can affect the result of the test within the first 30 minutes after smoking cessation. Second, if the testing is conducted in an area with no THC smoke, there is essentially no chance a passive subject will test positive for THC.
The last study is quite interesting because the researchers looked at real-life passive exposure to THC instead of the laboratory conditions seen in essentially all other passive THC exposure studies in a small confined space with little or no ventilation and a very ificant amount of marijuana smoke present. The researchers wanted to test cannabis concentrations in the blood and urine after passive exposure in real-life conditions. Blood samples were taken at one and a half, three, six, and 14 hours after the start of initial exposure, and urine samples were taken after three and half, six, 14, 36, 60, and 84 hours after initial exposure.
It could be demonstrated that all participants absorbed THC, however the detected concentrations were rather small.
Trace amounts could be detected in the blood for the first two collections, and was undetectable after that. The researchers went on to clarify that the study conditions were very extreme and very unlikely to happen in real settings. Like in the research of the s, the research done in the last 10 years looking at more potent marijuana and passive exposure show that it is very unlikely a person will test positive on an initial screen test or a confirmation test from passive exposure. John graduated in from the University of Alberta with a Bachelor of Science degree in physical therapy.
As a former physical therapist, John uses his knowledge of physical therapy and interest in ergonomics and biomechanics to devise fit for work testing. Toggle Menu. Home All Experts. Can secondhand exposure to cannabis smoke cause a positive drug test?
Q: Can secondhand exposure to cannabis smoke cause a positive drug test?
A: In the mid to late s, there were many studies done investigating this very question. Four passive subjects alongside four THC smokers inside a van smoking a 5. For Study No. At one hour, the subjects were allowed to exit the van and continued testing the passive subjects until 72 hours post exposure; they waited eight hours for the active smokers. The exact same timing for collections was followed in the second study.
The only difference was that all collections were conducted outside of the van to eliminate any contamination of the collection device with marijuana smoke. In Study No. Share this:. Written by John Hawes. Full Bio. More From Our Experts. What is an ergonomic assessment? What are some of the key things employers need to consider about ergonomics in the workplace? How is sleep apnea diagnosed? More of your questions answered by our Experts. Related Articles. Managing the Legalization of Cannabis in the Workplace.
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Can secondhand exposure to cannabis smoke cause a positive drug test?