Newborns' positive dope test mystery solved
Friday 15 Jun 2012 9:38 a.m.
Soap has been blamed for the apparent rise in positive drug tests in newborn babies
By 3 News online staff
A mysterious increase in the number of newborns testing positive for marijuana use has been blamed on certain brands of baby soap.
After nurses at a North Carolina hospital reported the strange rise, researchers found only trace amounts – less than 0.1 millilitres – were needed in order to produce a positive test result for THC, the active ingredient in marijuana.
The brands Johnson & Johnson's Head-to-Toe Baby Wash, J&J Bedtime Bath, CVS Night-Time Baby Bath, Aveeno Soothing Relief Creamy Wash and Aveeno Wash Shampoo do not contain THC at all, the researchers assured parents.
"It's not marijuana a in any way, shape or form," study researcher Catherine Hammett-Stabler told MSNBC.
"We really did this to help protect families from being falsely accused [of drug use]," says study researcher Dr Carl Seashore.
The researchers aren't sure why the soaps trigger positive results. They believe it could be that the soaps contain a compound structurally similar to THC, or that the soaps change the way the test works.
From now on, all positive tests are going to be re-tested for confirmation before social services get involved, reports MSNBC.