Urine tests are deemed accurate for detecting a wide variety of the most abused street drugs. The way to find which kind of drug is being abused is indicated in a key, a color-coded graphic that connects the colors on the urine test strip to the type of drug being used. How Does the Urine Test Color Chart Work? A urine testing kit comes with slender test strips protected in foil, a color-coded chart or table, and a vial, of course. The strips and color chart are integral to detecting traces of drugs in the urine. Depending on the concentration of the particular substance in the urine, the fields on the test strip change color. The resulting colors in these fields are compared to the color table, found on the urine test package. The colors indicate the type of drug and whether it is showing in normal or abnormal amounts. Which Drugs Can a Urine Test Detect? A urine test detects almost the entire roster of most frequently used and abused drugs, plus those that are not as commonly used. These include the following, abbreviated just as they are in the test kit chart:

  • Amp—Amphetamines (speed, amph, whizz)
  • Bar—Barbituates (depressants, barbs)
  • Bup—Buprenorphene (subutex)
  • BZO—Benzodiazepines (bennies, benzo’s, roofies)
  • COC—Cocaine (coke, crack, charlie)
  • COT—Cotinine (nicotine)
  • EDDP—Methadone Metabolite
  • MDMA—Methlenedioxymethamphetamines (ecstasy, E, XTC, pill, doves)
  • MET/mAMP—Methamphetamines (ice, glass, meth)
  • MOP/MOR—Morphine (opiates)
  • MTD—Methadone (dolly, red rock)
  • OPI—Opiates (heroin, smack, gear)
  • THC—Cannibus (marijuana, pot, hooch, weed, hash, ganja)
  • KET—Ketamine (Special K)

What Doesn’t a Urine Test Detect? A urine test is not deemed an accurate method for detecting alcohol abuse. It is also not effective for detecting the volume of drugs used beyond the 72-hour window of detection. So, if the drug was used four or five days before the testing, it will likely not show in an appreciable volume.  Depending on the drug, such tests may also not detect usage if the tested person successfully flushed most of the fluids from his or her body just before testing.