Several drug-testing methods can detect recent drug use. But what if the objective is to expose use further in the past? Hair testing is a valuable tool that can be used in prescription drug monitoring, treatment center, addiction testing, and criminal justice functions to identify substance use over a long period of time. Cordant Health Solutions™ is among a select few toxicology labs in the nation with the expertise and technology to offer this service.


The greatest strength of hair testing is its long detection window of seven days to three months. In certain cases, a substance can be spotted up to a year after ingestion. This knowledge is valuable in several areas of toxicology testing, including these:

  • Prescription Drug Monitoring – The brief detection window associated with urine, blood, and oral fluid makes it impossible to infer prolonged drug exposure from a single test. However, chronic substance abuse is a red flag for healthcare professionals when assessing new pain-management patients. Hair testing can be part of an initial patient evaluation to gather a baseline history and determine risk.

  • Treatment Center and Addiction Testing – Hair testing can be effective in measuring long-term compliance for those recovering from substance abuse and addiction. Substance-abuse treatment centers, in-patient and out-patient facilities, drug counselors, methadone clinics, private-practice physicians, and agents of the court can benefit from hair testing.
  • Criminal Justice – There are multiple agents with a legal interest in their clients’ sobriety, including judges, probation officers, and attorneys, as the stakes are higher with individuals who are forced into treatment. Hair testing can verify abstinence from specific drugs of interest over a long period of time.


Cordant’s hair-testing services include screens using enzyme immunoassay and confirmations via gas chromatography/mass spectrometry (GC-MS) or liquid chromatography/tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS). Our instrumentation is among the best in the industry and allows us to return quality results in a matter of days.

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