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DUI EtG Testing

If you are convicted of operating while intoxicated (OWI) in Michigan, you may be required to abstain from alcohol as a condition of your probation. There are a few different methods by which your alcohol consumption may be monitored, including alcohol-detecting tethers such as the SCRAM anklet.

The most common method, though, is random testing based on a color code system. If your color is called and you are required to test for alcohol use, you will typically be given either an EtG or a PBT alcohol screen.

Over the past several years, EtG (short for ethyl glucuronide) testing has become increasingly popular as a means of monitoring alcohol use by people who are court-ordered to abstain from drinking following a drunk driving conviction. These tests can supposedly detect alcohol metabolites in the body for up to several days after drinking.

Ethyl glucuronide, also called EtG, is a by-product of the body's metabolization of ethyl alcohol, the kind found in alcoholic beverages. The presence of EtG in your body can be an indication that you have consumed alcohol.

How EtG Testing Works

Unlike breathalyzers and blood tests that look for the direct presence of alcohol in your bloodstream and are meant to determine the level of intoxication at the time of the test, an EtG test can supposedly detect alcohol metabolites in your body for up to three days after drinking.

In theory, this is similar to the way marijuana testing works—even if you are not under the influence of marijuana (or in this case, alcohol) at the time of testing, the presence of certain metabolites can indicate that the substance has been used.

The idea is that if you have been ordered by the court to abstain from drinking, an EtG test will reveal whether you have actually consumed alcohol or not—even if the drinks were consumed more than two days ago.

However, the EtG test has been known to produce false-positives, and scientists, doctors, and officials at the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration have questioned the reliability of the results.

Potential Causes of False-Positive Results

Because the EtG test is designed to detect even minuscule amounts of ethyl alcohol metabolites, false-positive results can occur from contact with products containing alcohol or alcohol vapor or ingestion of food that contains alcohol. For example, a positive EtG screen could potentially result from:

  • Use of topical hand sanitizer
  • Exposure to certain cleaning products
  • Use of over-the-counter medications
  • Ingestion of communal or sacramental wine
Call Today! FREE Consultation Lawyer and Receive Immediate Attention for Your Criminal Law Case Patrick T. Barone is a Michigan Super Lawyer, who has maintained continuous top attorney ratings since 2007. In addition, the Michigan native is the author of multiple books on OWI, DUI and criminal law. The OUIL attorney near me has lectured at over 80 legal seminars all over America. He leads Barone Defense Firm in providing aggressive legal warriors for each client's criminal case.

Contact us 24 hours a day at our law firm’s easy to remember toll-free number, 1-877-ALL-MICH or 877-255-6424, for a free criminal case review. The Michigan attorneys near me at Barone Defense Firm travel the entire Great Lakes State, to help citizens in legal trouble in Michigan for alleged criminal law violations.

For your FREE lawyer consultation, call today to learn how to protect yourself from a possible unwarranted conviction. What do you have to lose, when the free legal advice with our litigation team’s criminal lawyers near me can answer many tough questions?

Client Reviews
Patrick Barone is the ONLY choice for DUI defense. He was realistic from the start and made it a point to look at my case before taking my money. As a business owner, when I think of attorneys, I think of the "shark infested waters. Patrick is a shark alright, but his prey is not the client; it's justice for his client. Ten stars Patrick!! Chris F.
Attorney Patrick Barone was very helpful and helped me understand the charge and sentence absolutely clearly. He also guided me through step by step helping me form a statement. His instructions were clear and detailed. It was obvious he cared about me understanding every important detail within my case. I would absolutely recommend this defense firm to anyone in need. Aaron B.
The Barone Defense Firm is the firm I recommend. They are truly concerned about the person, not just the legal issue, but the person as well. They are the most knowledgeable defense firm that I am aware of, having actually written the book on DWI Defense. If you are faced with a DWI you will not find a more professional and skilled law firm. But, most importantly, they care about how the accused individual recovers his or her life when the case is complete. Very remarkable group of lawyers. William H.