Poppy seed bagel leads to ‘traumatizing’ drug test result for expectant mom

Desiree Burns
August 11, 2018

A pregnant woman's poppy seed bagel caused Maryland health officials to incorrectly believe her baby was at risk when the mother's drug test came back positive for opiates. According to media reports by Daily Mail, the woman was reported to the state as soon as she was found positive for opiates. the media report also says that St Joseph Medical Center tests anyone with 300 nanograms of opiates per millimetre of blood will positive for the drugs.

Eden told the network she was coping with contractions as she delivered her baby on April 4 past year, when a doctor alerted her opioids had been found in her blood.

Ms Eden told local news station WVTM 13 that she suspected her poppy seed bagel may have been to blame for the positive opiate test results. The seeds contain trace amounts of opiates and can cause a false positive.

"We don't typically educate patients, and it's a really good point that people probably should know that if you use poppy seeds before you have a toxicology screen that it could result in a false positive test", Rossiter-Pratt explained.

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St. Joseph Medical Center routinely tests new mothers for opiates to identify possible at-rusk infants, Dr. Judith Rossiter-Pratt told WBAL. "It's not very common, but it can happen", Nelson told Live Science.

"If you eat a poppy seed roll, it could give rise to a positive result on a urine drug test for morphine", Professor Johnston told the BBC.

In a 1987 study, five members of a lab baked cookies containing about 1 teaspoon (5 milliliters) each of a poppy-seed filling that they bought from the grocery store. In addition, labs use different cutoffs for a "positive" result, and a lower cutoff would be more likely to trigger a positive result, he said.

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