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The unreliability of using a urine ethanol concentration to predict a blood ethanol concentration.

Of approximately 5,000 forensic cases with a positive ethanol result, over 1,000 were available in which both blood and urine were present for comparison of ethanol content. Data were examined for calculation of the urine to blood ethanol concentration ratio, with the intent of evaluating the validity of predicting a blood ethanol level given a urine ethanol level. The overall urine to blood ethanol concentration ratio was 1.57:1 with a range of 0.7 to 21.0:1. The extremely wide range of values implies that a large degree of error would be introduced if a mean ratio was used when predicting a blood ethanol level from a urine ethanol level.

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