I appreciate your asking this question because I found a source I had
never seen before in regards to drug testing questions. I found a drug
lab Q&A/Forum site, moderated by Doctors, where clinical practitioners
discuss drug testing, and ask and answer questions.
The short answer to your question is NO, it would be highly unlikely.
It is generally accepted in the drug testing community that Tramadol
does not cause a false positive for opiates.
HOME PAGE - Drug and Alcohol Testing Q&A - 2006
..."This on-line discussion forum about workplace drug and alcohol
testing is moderated by Robert Swotinsky, MD, a medical review
officer. This forum serves to exchange technical information and
expertise on workplace drug and alcohol testing among those
responsible for interpretation of drug test results..."
Select: "Search the 2006 articles"
View the resulting discussion links. The answers are given by the
Doctor, I think the source is excellent. This is the best information
about Tramadol & false positives for opiates:
Re: False-positive opiate screening tests
From: Robert Swotinsky MD
Date: 25 Jan 2006
Time: 16:44:05 -0800
..."Tramadol is an opioid, i.e., a synthetic product that has
psychoactive effects through its actions on opiate receptors. The
chemical structure of tramadol (click link to see) differs
significantly from that of morphine (on the right below). Since
opiate immunoassays designed for codeine/morphine detection are
targeted toward free morphine, and the chemical structures are so
different, it is unlikely that tramadol would cross-react with an
I hope this helps!
Ultram OR Tramadol "false positive" opiates
Clarification of Answer by
31 Aug 2006 03:02 PDT
I found the page with Dr. Swotinsky's credentials, very interesting:
..."Robert Swotinsky, MD, MPH, is an occupational medicine physician
and expert on workplace drug and alcohol testing. He is Chair of
Fallon Clinic's Occupational Medicine Department in Massachusetts,
where he leads a clinical program at five sites and several corporate
locations. Dr. Swotinsky is board certified in Occupational Medicine,
is certified as a Medical Review Officer (MRO) and Substance Abuse
Professional (SAP), and is an Aviation Medical Examiner. Dr.
Swotinsky has written four books on workplace drug and alcohol
testing, is founding Editor of the MRO Update newsletter, is a
coauthor of the (MROCC) MRO certification examination, and teaches in
national courses for MROs. Dr. Swotinsky's interests include
workplace drug and alcohol testing, toxicology, and assessment of work
(dis)ability. Dr. Swotinsky graduated with chemical engineering and
biology degrees from MIT, an MD degree from Vanderbilt University
School of Medicine, and a Masters in Public Health from the University
of California, Los Angeles..."