If you are taking Focalin or Adderall for ADHD and need to take an employment drug screen, will these medications show a positive for amphetamines or methamphetamines?
Not all drug screening tests are created equal. How ADHD medications show up might depend on the sensitivity of the test and what specifics your employer or potential employer has requested.
Some laboratories will take an extra step to verify a positive result. Focalin, for example, might give a positive result in the initial test, however, when a verification test is run (using different metrics) it would not show up as amphetamine or methamphetamine.
Some labs will perform specific tests that exclude common ADHD medications, such as Ritalin, Daytrana or Focalin.
Adderall, however, will usually test positive for amphetamines.
When having an employment drug screen completed, make sure to list any medications you are taking on the intake form, as well as providing the prescribing doctor’s name and phone number. If you have a legitimate prescription, many labs will take steps to make sure they do not report a false positive to your employer.
Remember, you have the right to not disclose your medical condition or medication to your employer. However, if you do want to request accommodations at work, you will need to disclose your diagnosis.
Thank you for your response. I did speak with a product specialist at Novartis (mfg of Focalin) who advised me that Focalin may show a positive on a screening test, depending on the level of sensitivity, however, because it is dexmethylphenidate that when additional verification procedures are performed to confirm a positive test that it will not test positive as an amphetamine or methamphetamine. I also spoke with a Physician who works for LabCorp iin the toxicology department who also indicated that Focalin, Ritalin, and Daytrana will not test positive as specific testing is performed to exclude these medications from testing positive as an amphetamine. He also confirmed that Adderall will test positive for Amphetamines but will not test positive for methamphetamine. I hope this additional information helps as well. (I am a HCP who has a patient who tested negative for Amphetamines when prescribed a stimulant such as dexmethylphenidate. I certainly did not want to accuse a patient of diversion without the facts and it turns out that the patient would not test positive.)
Thanks so much for this additional information. It is quite helpful and I may refer readers to your answer for further clarification when they ask about this issue.