Send to

Choose Destination
Clin Chem. 1994 Apr;40(4):608-12.

Decreased signal in Emit assays of drugs of abuse in urine after ingestion of aspirin: potential for false-negative results.

Author information

Department of Pathology, University of Louisville School of Medicine, University of Louisville Hospital, KY 40292.


During routine drug analysis with the Syva d.a.u. Emit immunoassays we observed a high frequency of urines with lower rates of changes in absorbance (delta A R) than the rate for a drug-free urine calibrator. Many of these urines contained salicylates. Among 40 urines with apparent salicylate concentrations between 15 and 420 mg/dL tested for benzoylecgonine (BE), 20 had delta A R < -4 (range +2 to -28 mA/min). The rates decreased with increasing salicylate: delta A R = -0.057 x (salicylate, mg/dL) -0.22 mA/min (r = 0.85, n = 40, P < 0.01). Urines from 100 control subjects (no salicylate) had mean +/- SD delta A R values of -1.05 +/- 2.2 mA/min (range +3 to -7; only two were < -4 mA/min). Although direct addition of salicylic acid (200 mg/dL) to urine specimens did not reproduce the negative bias, ingestion of aspirin (acetylsalicylic acid) did by -0.09 mA/min per 1 mg/dL (72.4 mumol/L) salicylate. Negative biases observed for other Emit d.a.u. assays after salicylate ingestion lead us to conclude that ingestion of therapeutic doses of aspirin may cause false-negative results for drug screens in urines by this technology.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free full text

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for HighWire
Loading ...
Support Center