Hair‐testing for illicit drugs

John Parkes (School of Health and Social Sciences, Coventry University)

The British Journal of Forensic Practice

ISSN: 1463-6646

Publication date: 1 December 2004


Human hair may contain deposits of illicit drugs. Testing of hair will provide an indicator of drug use at the time the hair was grown. Hair samples have several advantages over urine samples, particularly length of surveillance period (months rather than days) and resistance to tampering. Any form of drug‐testing must be seen as a component of a clinical plan for the management of the patient's drug misuse, mental disorder and offending.


Parkes, J. (2004), "Hair‐testing for illicit drugs", The British Journal of Forensic Practice, Vol. 6 No. 4, pp. 21-25.

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