How long does it take marijuana to leave your system enough to pass a drug test?

This really is “for a friend”. :smiley: I never smoked the stuff habitually and I haven’t had a puff in 15 years. (If it were legal I might, but it’s not and I don’t enjoy the high enough to risk the possible legal and career consequences.)

However, I have a former student worker who’s on the job trail now. She had an interview that went well but they asked her to take a drug test (hair, not urine) as a prerequisite to hiring, which has her worried. She last smoked about 5 months ago; I looked on various web sites to affray her anxiety and most say that should be long enough, but others say up to a year.
I basically told her “it’s up to Jesus and the Supremes”, but that should be long enough. I did advise her not to take golden seal root as the last time I had to take a drug test they specifically tested for that as well.

But I’m curious- does anyone know the “straight dope” on her likelihood of passing the hair test?

Well the thing is, if I understand correctly, if her hair is at least 5 months long, they could get it that way. But I might not understand it correctly.

As for it being in her system, 5 months should be long enough for it to be out of the system of even the heaviest user.

http://www.erowid.org/plants/cannabis/cannabis_testing.shtml

Her hair is about average length for a woman (i.e. she’s not Crystal Gayle and she’s not Sinead but more Lucille Ball ca. 1955 length). Might be a good time to have a trim since that would take the oldest part off.

I’m pretty sure they test the follicle, not the shaft.

By follicle, I assume you mean root…right, not the actual hole that the hair comes out of. I thought it was the shaft. A friend of mine just had that done, she complained that the chunk of hair they took as a sample was way too big, about a .5-1 sq in. I can’t imagine them ripping that much hair out.

I had it done once. It was about a 2 inch long and 1/3 inch wide lock from under the “canopy” in back. (I have thick hair and thickest in back- I had asked whether I’d need a haircut afterwards and was assured I wouldn’t, and I didn’t.)

The same employee says they’re also going to do a credit check. That’s what would worry me- ironically I’m in a better financial position than ever (no real debt, a bank account, and property owner) but I’ve probably never had worse credit due to a complicated situation (some of which is and some of which isn’t my fault). No idwhat they look for; I don’t think the student really has any credit- good or bad- so she should be fine. (The company was founded by Ross Perot- I used to work for them myself on another account- and I understand the background investigations under him were waaaaaay more invasive.)

No, it’s the shaft. Testing the hair allows them to look for usage over a recent period (the period of growth of whatever length of hair they need) and cannot be foiled by simply stopping smoking for a period or by cleansing/doping kits.

5 inches equals 12.7 centimeters and human hair grows about 1 centimeter each month, so it might be a close call.

I am firmly convinced that some companies do a drug test not to disqualify for employment but to establish drug use as a pre-existing condition for health care.

Maybe some, but not mine. I was told in a drug awareness session recently that the test equipment is now so sensitive that it will get you after you’ve walked thru a room where pot was in use. If you have that odor then they take you out of the workplace to a testing lab and then fire you from the state agency.

I would want to know how much she smoked up to five months ago. Daily use and then quit five months ago or smoked once in her life and that was five months ago. I really don’t know if it would make a difference but I would feel better in the latter situation.

As ready as I am to believe any stretch of corporate drug-testing evil, this seems… far fetched to me. What “odor”? Are they waving a wand around you or something?

[herbalist hijack]Goldenseal is supposed to enable you to pass a **urine **test sooner, but it’s not effective even for that. I’ve never heard it even suggested for a hair strand test, and if I ever do, I’ll have to slap the person offering that advice.

Goldenseal does have some *slight *diuretic properties, but it’s mostly an herbal antibiotic, and a very good and very endangered one. It makes me really, really mad when people waste it to pass drug tests when they could just drink a whole lot of water for identical results. So yes, thank you for warning her against goldenseal, no matter what test she’s in for.[/hh]