Is your blood alcohol test accurate?

When drivers in Wisconsin are suspected of driving under the influence, certain tests may be performed to figure out what your blood alcohol content (BAC) level is. The test that is widely considered to be the most accurate is the blood alcohol test, but just how accurate is it in reality? 

WebMD discusses the blood alcohol test, including how it is performed and how the results are examined. After arrest, your blood is drawn and then sent to a lab. This lab will run tests to determine how high the alcohol content within the sample is. This is considered to be more accurate than a breath test because nothing in your mouth will interfere with the reading. 

However, even a blood alcohol test is not infallible. Human error can cause issues. For example, a busy lab could accidentally swap your sample with someone else’s or give you the results from another person’s sample. If the sample is left out for too long, blood can begin to rot or coagulate as well, which may lead to it reading falsely high BAC levels. Contamination of the sample is also possible. 

Additionally, your own body may work against you. Alcohol takes a while to get from the liver to the blood stream. By the time you have your blood drawn for testing, your BAC level may actually be higher than it was while you were driving. 

These are all important factors to take into consideration when examining the evidence set against you. Though it may feel as if some of these things are absolute proof, that is not always the case.