Swedish researchers report they have developed a breath test that could be used as an alternative to urine drug testing. The test detects many drugs including marijuana, cocaine, heroin and methamphetamine, according to HealthDay.
Urine analysis, which is the most commonly used drug test, has been criticized as being inconvenient and a violation of privacy, the researchers note. The new breath test uses a highly sensitive method called liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry. It uses aerosol particles formed during breathing.
The researchers collected breath samples using a currently available breath test called SensAbues, which consists of a mouthpiece and micro-particle filter. When a person breathes into the mouthpiece, the device separates saliva and larger particles from the tiny particles that are measured. The micro-particles pass through and deposit onto a filter, which is sealed and stored. The particles are then analyzed using liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry.