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How Urine and Oral Fluid Toxicology Testing Helps Keep Doctors With Medication Management

What's The Purpose of Urine and Oral Fluid Testing?

It’s important to keep doctors and patients safe regarding medications. By monitoring drug levels in urine and oral fluid, toxicology testing can help to ensure that the medications are being taken as prescribed. 

Urine and oral fluid toxicology testing is a non-invasive way of monitoring drug levels in patients. In some cases, it can give the most accurate up-to-date reading and can be more accurate than blood testing. This allows for a more precise diagnosis and adjustments to medications when needed.

Furthermore, this test helps doctors determine if a patient is under potential substance abuse. It can also be used to determine if the patient has overdosed on prescription medicine. Testing is also used to ensure that patients take their prescribed medicines. 

Medication Management

3 million older adults are admitted to nursing homes due to drug-related problems in the United States. This adds up to approximately $14 billion in costs every year. (1) The number of medications we take can be a little overwhelming as we age. Older adults are on their own to remember these medications that often times are taken at different times of the day. Because of all the different factors, it is easy for older adults to get confused and not remember if they have taken their medications as they should. With urine and oral fluid toxicology, it is easy for doctors to check and ensure the medications they prescribe are taken as expected.

Because of the risk of patients abusing pain medication, many doctors prefer to monitor the usage through oral fluid and urine testing as they are simple to perform and help everyone stay honest. You can expect that most controlled substances will be monitored with testing often. The doctors are checking to ensure the patient is not abusing the medication but also is actually taking it.

Why Medication Management is Important

The medication management doctor’s responsibility is to ensure that there will be no harmful drug interaction that could put the patient in danger. Cases that need multiple medications involve instances where a person is experiencing chronic illnesses, several injuries, and psychological disorders. In complicated cases like this, medication must be managed appropriately. Failure to do so could lead to severe health consequences and even death.

Furthermore, it is said that most Americans don’t take their medications as prescribed. In fact, the number is a staggering 50%. This leads to approximately 125,000 premature deaths. (2)  Some of this could be prevented with better medication management.  

Why Use Oral Fluid and Urine?

Oral fluid and urine drug testing is a popular and cost-effective testing solution that is not as invasive as other forms of testing. Because of this, it is simple to collect. Some tests can be performed right in the doctor’s office with an instant test. Others will need to be sent out to a laboratory, such as Keystone Labs, to have more extensive testing done. Whatever type the doctor decides will give them the information they need regarding dosage levels. It could be something as simple as ensuring the patient is actually taking the medications, which could be found in a quick instant test. Or they may need much more and deeper information, which will be reported from a testing lab. 

All testing is done to ensure the safety of the patient. By accurately detecting the presence of certain medications, medication testing can reduce the chances of abuse and associated risks.

One of the most important benefits of using oral fluid or urine drug testing is that it helps to reduce opportunities for drug abuse and its associated risks. By accurately detecting the presence of drugs, doctors can help their patients stay safe while taking their medications. Additionally, this test is less costly than traditional blood tests and provides faster results than urine or other blood tests.

Medication Management Lowers Hospitalizations.

A study found that medication errors in the home injure nearly 1.3 million people. This can include taking the incorrect medications or dose too soon. Medication errors like this can result in adverse reactions and even hospitalization.

This study only counted errors that occurred outside of a healthcare facility.  It utilized data that was examined from various poison control centers across the US.  According to the study, this ranges from symptoms that usually necessitate treatment to life-threatening situations and even death. (3)

Improving Therapeutic Outcome With Medication Management

There’s no question that medication adherence is an important issue. Poor medication adherence can lead to a decreased therapeutic outcome, land the patient in the hospital with medical concerns, or worse, death. Medication management is a key part of ensuring successful treatment. Working with your doctor, you can continue to ensure that your medications are safe and working appropriately.

Medication management improves adherence by helping patients understand their medications and how to take them properly. This ensures that patients are taking their medications as prescribed and that they’re not over or under-using them.

Medication management is an essential component of any healthcare and therapeutic program and is key to achieving optimal patient outcomes. With the right medication management services and tools, such as Keystone Laboratories’ oral fluid and urine drug testing, providers can ensure that their patients take the appropriate medications safely and effectively. 

Work With A Trusted Toxicology Expert

Keystone Laboratories, a CAP-accredited North Carolina licensed laboratory and CLIA-licensed lab, is committed to helping you make important decisions that impact the safety and health of your patients with greater confidence. Clients in 48 states can get prescription drug and substance abuse recovery monitoring, specialized testing, workplace drug testing, screening, and program management services from Keystone. Contact Keystone Laboratories today to receive the industry-leading laboratory testing services!

Medication Management
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