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A 31-year-old male asked:

i have been smoking 8-10 cigarettes for last 10 years.i have a urine cotinine test in 20 days. will i test negative if i quit smoking 10 days before the test?

2 doctor answers6 doctors weighed in
Dr. Martin Raff
Infectious Disease 56 years experience
Cotinine: Levels of cotinine detected in urine vary due to a variety of factors including; the type of tobacco used, filtered vs. non-filtered cigarette, how heavily the individual inhaled the smoke, the length of time an individual chewed, the number of cigarettes smoked per day, and the concentration of the urine. These variables make it difficult to determine exactly how much an individual uses tobacco.
Dr. Alan Wartenberg
A Verified Doctoranswered
A US doctor answeredLearn more
Yes: but why wait? The main reason to quit smoking is not to pass a test, it is to improve your health and your chances of living a longer (and healthier) life. Nicotine does not accumulate and is short-acting, and its metabolite cotinine is generally only around for 3-5 days after quitting smoking. Hair tests can, however, detect nicotine/tobacco use going back as long as several months.

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Last updated Jan 12, 2019

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