All information on THC

At a glance

Cannabis in particular plays an important role in the daily road traffic. Here, the active substance delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC for short) is tested in a rapid test. Rapid tests are carried out by police officers with sweat or saliva samples.

If such a test is positive, a drug test in the laboratory is ordered.

THC is degraded within about 8 hours via intestine, kidney and by oxygen delivery.

For more information

The urine test for THC-carboxylic acid (THC-COOH), a metabolite of THC is the most commonly used method.

In the urine, the metabolites can be detected for up to several weeks if the consumption takes place regularly.

  • The single smoking of cannabis can lead to a positive detection after 24 to 36 hours.
  • Repeated intake leads to a detection period of five to seven days.
  • chronic abuse can be detected for several weeks.

The reason for this is the good fat solubility. THC is easily deposited in high-fat tissue, for example in the brain, and is slowly degraded there.

Therefore, the feeling of intoxication has usually long since faded away, although the degradation products of THC are still clearly visible in the urine test. For this reason, some consumers are getting behind the wheel in the misconception that the drug has long since been excreted from the body.


  • Beubler, E. et al. (2013): Opiatabhängigkeit: Interdisziplinäre Aspekte für die Praxis, Springer-Verlag, 1. Auflage
  • Sauer, O. & Weilemann L. S. (2001): Drogen: Eigenschaften – Wirkungen – Intoxikationen, Schlütersche-Verlag, 1. Auflage
  • Maddea, B. & Dettmeyer, R. (2007): Basiswissen Rechtsmedizin, Springer-Verlag, 1. Auflage
  • Neubauer, S. (2019): Urintest: Was im Urin per Teststreifen nachgewiesen werden kann, URL:, Abgerufen am 18.06.2019
Status of information: 2022