Hair Alcohol Testing
Hair Alcohol Testing by one of the leading specialist hair drug and alcohol testing laboratories
- Legally defensible Analysis Results and Expert Reports accepted in all UK family courts issued in 5 working days on average
- Analysis in accordance with the Society of Hair Testing to internationally agreed standards
- A dedicated Client Support team to manage your case from start to finish with an unparalleled commitment to meeting your deadlines
- LAA codified prices and competitor price matching
- Direct contact with experts that have over 50 years combined experience in hair analysis
Hair Alcohol Testing Explained
Our hair alcohol test detects two types of alcohol biomarkers, the Fatty Acid Ethyl Ester; Ethyl Palmitate (EtPa) and ETG (Ethyl Glucuronide), as standard to help in the assessment of chronic excessive alcohol consumption. This ensures that there is a greater degree of certainty of the analysis results and helps in the mutual confirmation of the results.
Ethyl Palmitate (EtPa) and EtG are metabolites (by-products) produced by the body after the consumption of alcohol. For this reason Ethyl Palimtate (EtPa) and EtG are suitable biomarkers for the detection of alcohol in hair when trying to asses chronic excessive alcohol use.
To avoid confusion, we analyse samples of the hair strand for the alcohol markers, not the hair follicle. The hair follicle is a small tubular cavity within the skin that contains the root of the hair.
We perform Ethyl Palmitate (EtPa) & EtG analysis as standard and strongly recommend that this is used in conjunction with other forms of evidence such as blood alcohol tests (Liver Function and Carbohydrate Deficient Transferrin), clinical assessments and history of alcohol abuse to help obtain a more comprehensive picture of an individual’s alcohol use. An alcohol in hair test should not be used to monitor alcohol abstinence.
Can body hair be used for alcohol testing?
If no scalp hair is available, then chest, leg and arm hair can be used. Body hair grows at the same average rate of 1cm per month, however it has a different growth cycle to that of scalp hair, meaning that a greater proportion of the hair remains on the body in its resting (non-growing) or telogen phase. For this reason, body hair samples are analysed as a whole sample and are unable to be segmented into a month by month analysis.
For more information or advice on our hair alcohol testing services, please call us on 029 2048 4141 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
The Society of Hair Testing suggests that Ethyl Palmitate (EtPa) and EtG analysis should be used for the hair strand alcohol test in either a 0-3 cm or a 0-6 cm section, covering approximately the past 3 or 6 months respectively. Upon special instruction we can analyse smaller sections (i.e. less than 3 cm or 6 cm) for the presence of Ethyl Palmitate (EtPa) and EtG, however the results should be interpreted with caution. This is only available after consultation with our experts.
Ethyl Palmitate (EtPa) and EtG are different biomarkers that when used together can provide a greater degree of confidence when assessing an individual’s chronic excessive alcohol consumption. Either test may be used in isolation, however this rules out the mutual confirmation of results.
Lextox has taken guidance from the Society of Hair Testing 2016 Consensus for the Use of Alcohol Markers in Hair for Assessment of Chronic Excessive Alcohol Consumption and provides Ethyl Palmitate (EtPa) and EtG analysis as a combined test as standard for the mutual exclusion of false positives and false negatives.
It is also recommended that the alcohol in hair test is used in conjunction with blood alcohol tests (liver function and CDT) to help obtain a more comprehensive picture of an individual’s alcohol use.
For information, in the UK, 1 unit of alcohol is defined as 8 grams or 10 millilitres of alcohol, so 60 grams of alcohol equates to 7.5 units. The amount of alcohol consumed depends on the strength of the drink. A single shot of spirits is 1 unit, a standard glass of wine (175ml) and a pint of lower strength lager is 2 units and a bottle of wine at 12% ABV is 9 units.