30 Sec Answer: Gabapentin will test positive on a standard drug screen for benzodiazepines.
Gabapentin is an anti-epileptic medication that has been approved by the FDA since 1994 to treat epilepsy, postherpetic neuralgia, and other types of neuropathic pain. It is also commonly prescribed off-label to treat anxiety and insomnia. As with any medication, it is important to understand what it will test positive for on a drug screening in order to ensure accuracy in results and avoid potential conflicts with legal issues or employers.
What is Gabapentin?
Gabapentin is an anticonvulsant and analgesic (pain reliever) used to control seizures in people with epilepsy and to relieve pain caused by nerve damage in adults. It works by slowing down signals from damaged nerves in the body. Commonly known under its brand name Neurontin, it was initially developed as a way to treat epileptic seizures but has since become popular among doctors who use it off-label for treating anxiety, insomnia, bipolar disorder, withdrawal symptoms from alcohol or opioids, and other conditions.
What Will Gabapentin Test Positive For?
Unfortunately, gabapentin does not have its own unique testing panel. Standard drug screens for prescription medications will typically only look for benzodiazepines such as diazepam (Valium), alprazolam (Xanax), clonazepam (Klonopin), lorazepam (Ativan), temazepam (Restoril), and oxazepam (Serax). In other words, gabapentin will test positive on a standard drug screen for benzodiazepines even though it is not a benzodiazepine itself. This can lead to inaccurate results if not properly interpreted by the medical professional conducting the screening.
Why Does Gabapentin Test Positive For Benzodiazepines?
The reason why gabapentin tests positive for benzodiazepines is because they are structurally similar molecules that both bind to certain receptors in the brain called GABA receptors. These receptors are responsible for controlling nerve transmission which affects mood, emotions, sleep patterns, and more. While gabapentin does not have the same psychoactive effects as benzodiazepines like Xanax or Valium do, it does interact with these GABA receptors in the same manner which can lead to false positives when tested on a standard drug screen.
Are There Other Medications That May Also Test Positive For Benzodiazepines?
Yes, there are several medications that may also show up as false positives on a standard drug screen for benzodiazepines due to their chemical similarities: bupropion (Wellbutrin), hydroxyzine (Vistaril), meprobamate (Equanil), diphenhydramine (Benadryl), cetirizine (Zyrtec), cyclobenzaprine (Flexeril), promethazine (Phenergan), buspirone (Buspar), carisoprodol (Soma), eszopiclone (Lunesta) zolpidem (Ambien). Additionally, some antibiotics like ampicillin can also lead to false positives due to their structure being similar to benzodiazepines.
Are False Positives Common With Drug Screens?
False positives are relatively uncommon when conducted correctly; however, there are certain circumstances where they can occur more frequently than others. The most common type of false positive occurs when two different drugs share similar structures and therefore produce similar results on a test. This could be two different types of drugs within the same class or two different classes entirely depending on how closely related they are chemically speaking. As mentioned above, this is often seen with gabapentin testing positive for benzodiazepines due to their similar chemical structures.
How To Avoid False Positives On A Drug Screen
In order to avoid false positives on a drug screen it is important to provide your doctor with a full list of all medications you are currently taking prior to testing so they can accurately interpret the results. It is also helpful to mention any vitamins or supplements you may be taking since these can sometimes interfere with test results as well. If your doctor suspects you may have had exposure to illicit substances then additional confirmatory testing may be necessary in order to rule out any potential false positives from medications or supplements you may be taking regularly.
It is important to understand what medications will test positive on a drug screening in order to ensure accuracy of results and avoid potential conflicts with legal issues or employers. While gabapentin does not have its own unique testing panel it will usually show up as a false positive when tested against standard panels looking for benzodiazepines such as diazepam, alprazolam, clonazepam, lorazepam, temazepam, and oxazepam due to their similar chemical structures interacting with certain receptors in the brain known as GABA receptors. Additionally there are several other medications including bupropion, hydroxyzine, meprobamate , diphenhydramine , cetirizine , cyclobenzaprine , promethazine , buspirone , carisoprodol , eszopiclone , zolpidem which could potentially lead to false positives depending on individual circumstance or sensitivity of testing methods used so it’s important to let your doctor know about all medications you’re currently taking prior to testing.