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Certificate Program

Principles of Clinical Toxicology

  • Credit: 10.0 ACCENT
  • Level: Intermediate

Price: $515.00

Member Price: $265.00

Program Content

This program was developed for laboratory professionals at all levels who work in labs that perform toxicology testing, as well as other health care professionals with an interest in this specialty. The content is at a basic to intermediate-level and will provide participants a basic background in clinical toxicology, cover most screening procedures, illustrate best practices, and show how toxicology testing shapes diagnosis and treatment decisions.


This program is composed of four courses, listed below. Each course can be completed online in approximately 1-2 hours, and contains a lectures, readings, resources, and a quiz.

1. Introduction to Clinical Toxicology
Jill Warrington, MD, PhD, University of Vermont, Burlington, VT
Kamisha Johnson-Davis, PhD, DABCC, University of Utah/ARUP Laboratories, Salt Lake City, UT

Review fundamental clinical toxicology principles, identify common acute toxic exposures and associated laboratory findings, and highlight drug overdose findings.

2. Immunoassays to Screen for Drugs of Abuse
Stacy E.F. Melanson, MD, PhD, Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Boston, MA
He Sarina Yang, PhD, DABCC, Weill Cornell Medicine, New York, NY

Explain the principles of common immunoassays for urine drug testing and describe how to validate an immunoassay that screens for drugs of abuse. List advantages and disadvantages using immunoassays for urine drug testing. Explain the utility of immunoassay testing in pain management settings and describe the testing used in the Medication-Assisted Treatment program. List the common reasons for false positive and false negative results. Describe the metabolic pathways for common pain medications. Explain the advantages and disadvantages of point-of-care testing for pain management drugs.

3. Specimens for Toxicology Testing
Andrea Terrell, PhD, DABCC, Phoenix Laboratories LLC, Indianapolis, IN
Reviewer: Joshua Akin, MAS, MLS, UC San Diego Health System, San Diego, CA

Describe the basic uses and limitations of a variety of specimen types used in toxicology testing such as urine, blood, hair, oral fluid, sweat, and meconium. Review the conditions for specimen integrity when testing urine samples, and discuss hot topics in alternative matrices.

4. Chromatography Basics for Toxicology Testing
James Ritchie, PhD, DABCC, FACB, Emory University, Atlanta, GA
Reviewer: Jaime Noguez, PhD, DABCC, Case Western University, Cleveland, OH

Review the separation technologies used in clinical labs and the mathematical theories behind chromatography. Describe the common types of chromatography used in the toxicology laboratory and the principles behind GC/HPLC. Explain the considerations for sample preparation, and principles for quantitation of a separation.


Program Updated: 2020

Course Number: 12746

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Supported by

This program was developed in cooperation with the Therapeutic Drug Management and Toxicology Division.