What is the role of lab studies in the workup of methamphetamine toxicity?

Updated: Oct 29, 2020
  • Author: John R Richards, MD, FAAEM; Chief Editor: Jeter (Jay) Pritchard Taylor, III, MD  more...
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Laboratory studies should be selected on the basis of the patient's symptoms. Although hair and saliva analysis may be obtained, most toxicological monitoring or testing is performed with urine and blood samples. Studies to obtain may include the following:

  • Complete blood count (CBC) and chemistry panel - To assess renal and electrolyte function

  • Creatine kinase (CK) and/or myoglobin levels - To exclude rhabdomyolysis

  • Serial troponin levels - If there is concern for myocardial ischemia

  • B-type natriuretic peptide (BNP) level - If acute heart failure is suspected

  • Pregnancy test - In women of childbearing age

  • Toxicology screens - Useful for patients who cannot or will not disclose drug use history and for pediatric patients with new-onset seizure

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