CBD oil – am I affected at work?

A number of stores in the UK are now selling Cannabidiol Oil (CBD) as a herbal supplement. However, the question remains – would I test positive in a drugs and alcohol test? More importantly, am I safe at work?

Cannabis has many active chemical constituents.  The two that have been investigated the most in respect of their medicinal value are tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD).

THC is the major psychoactive constituent of cannabis, and is considered responsible for giving so called “highs” to users of cannabis. CBD however, is not psychoactive. 

First up, CBD oil

CBD oil is an unlicensed product in the UK, but is available to purchase in high street shops or online.  These claim to contain either none or extremely low levels (less than 0.2%) of THC, which is the compound that can lead to positive results. 

CBD oil is not licensed in the UK, therefore the THC concentration might be more than stated and cannot be guaranteed.  If not taken according to manufacturer advice, it may cause a positive drug test result. 

Please note, CBD oil products purchased illegally or on the internet may contain high levels of THC and this can lead to some individuals failing a drug test.

Next up, Sativex

From the 1st November 2018, new regulations in the UK meant that certain specialists could prescribe Sativex. However, it’s important to recognise that this differs from the over the counter CBD oil products.

Sativex is a medicine that can be legally prescribed in the UK by certain specialists for patients with Multiple Sclerosis and other certain medical conditions. Any individual using Sativex will have a legal medical prescription, therefore Sativex is not available over the counter. 

This medicine contains significant levels of psychoactive THC [Tetrahydrocannabinol]. The cannabis extract in this medicine will lead to a positive drug test result and the individual might not be safe at work due to the psychoactive effects of THC.

Please note that Express Medicals can never guarantee the outcome of a drug test if CBD oil has been used / is being used.

If you have any questions or concerns, please consult your doctor.

Express Medicals is one of the UK’s leading independent occupational health companies with over 23 years’ experience. We provide medical testing, drug and alcohol testing and well-being and mental health services.
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