The use of hair ethyl glucuronide (EtG) levels as a biomarker for chronic high intake of ethanol (EtOH) is increasing, and misclassification of alcohol consumption may have large implications for the patient. The aim of this study was to compare levels of hair EtG in patients with reduced kidney function to levels seen in a comparable control group and to investigate whether the hair EtG levels among kidney failure patients who are social drinkers may lead to a false-positive diagnosis of heavy drinking.
A total of 41 patients with reduced kidney function and 42 healthy volunteers were included in the study. Both patients and the healthy volunteers reported moderate alcohol intake. The levels of EtG in hair (corrected for estimated daily intake of EtOH [EDI]) were compared between the 2 groups.
There was no significant difference between the groups regarding EDI. Despite this, there were significant higher levels of hair EtG (corrected for EDI) in the patient group compared to the control group (p