Frequently Asked Questions

Most frequently asked questions:

  • How long does it take to get results? Answer: It takes 2-3 weeks to get results after the lab receives the samples.
  • Can you test powdered / crystalline chemicals and street drugs? Answer: Yes. Ecstasydata tests and works to identity almost all street drugs and many pharmaceuticals. We are now able to reliably identify LSD, though we do not yet have lab standards for 1p-LSD, LSZ, or AL-LAD.
  • How do I receive the results? Answer: All results are posted to the website.
  • Can I get results by email? Answer: No, all results are posted to the website.
  • How much material do you need? Answer: For tablets, we need the whole tablet. For powders, we need 20-50mg.
  • Can I get actual quantities of the substances in my sample? (Can I find out the amount of drug is in my sample?) # Answer: No. The DEA does not allow our program to provide quantitative results. We cannot tell you how pure your powder is, nor how much of a substance is in a tablet, capsule, or other form. See About Tests & Data: Why don't you display actual milligram (mg) quantitative amounts?.
  • Can I get milligram amounts if my sample is not controlled? # Answer: No. Our program is not allowed to provide quantitative data about ANY sample we test, not just samples that happen to not contain controlled substances.
  • Do you know who can test quantitatively? #. Answer: Please see our Additional Testing Resources page. Most labs in the United States can do quantitative testing of popular drugs but not for anonymously submitted samples. If you are willing to provide your identification for testing, you should be able to find forensic analytical labs in any major city. Call around. Otherwise, the only places we know about, we list on that page.
  • Can you test my pharmaceutical tablet or capsule? Answer: Probably, but we are focused on street and recreational drugs. Some types of pharmaceuticals simply can't be identified using the technical system (GC/MS) our lab uses. We do not guarantee that we can detect any pharmaceutical or drug. Only drugs we have previously identified can we definitively detect and ID in an unknown sample. Note that if the sample looks like a pharmaceutical, you will be responsible for the pharmaceutical pricing of $150/sample. We can not test soft gelcaps that contain liquid.
  • Can you test for hormones, such as HGH? Answer: No. Some steroids have hormone-like effects and can be detected, but in general hormone molecules are too big to validly identify in a GC/MS machine. GC/MS is capable of detecting and identifying compaounds up to around 1100 AMU (Atomic Mass Units). Molecules larger than 1100 AMU do not detect properly. The HGH molecule is 22,000 AMU, consisting of 191 amino acids. These types of substances do not work with the system our lab uses, which is oriented towards 'small' molecules.
  • Why is testing ecstasy tablets less expensive than other tests? # Answer: Because pressed ecstasy tablets are unique enough for a short period that the information is useful to many other people, not just the submitter. Therefore, EcstasyData's sponsors subsidize the testing.
  • If I send in two samples, is it $40 or $80? Each pressed ecstasy tablet requires a $40 co-pay, so $80. For all other ecstasy, research chemical, and street drug samples, the cost is $100 per sample. Pharmaceuticals and herbal supplements cost $150 per sample to test.
  • Can you analyze vitamins and minerals? No, not really. The EcstasyData program is designed for testing and identifying psychoactive substances. Simple sugars, vitamins, and minerals do not show up properly using the techniques used by our lab. Further, since anonmyity is not necessary for testing vitamins, you should use a normal commercial lab process.
  • Can you tell me if my generic / Indian / Canadian generic pharmaceutical is the same as the name brand? Answer: No, not really. This program is set up for providing basic analysis for controlled street drugs. You will get a list of identified drugs in the sample with ratios, just like every other result from EcstasyData / DDL. You will not get amounts/dose, nor a list of binders or inactive agents such as sugars, salts, etc. If knowing that your Internet Avodart or Tramadol contains dutasteride or tramadol is enough for you, then our testing might be useful. Again, the cost is $150 per sample.
  • Can you tell me if a pharmaceutical sample is authentic and not a generic version? Answer: No. See previous answer about generics.
  • What forms of payment do you accept? Answer: The lab ONLY accepts US currency or US-currency money orders. For submitters outside the US, Erowid can accept payment through our website using bitcoins, credit card, personal check, bitcoins, etc. But there is no streamlined system for this. You can send your payment using the Erowid EcstasyData Payment Page and indicate you're paying for analysis. After we receive your payment, we will send you a unique code include. If we don't send you a code after your payment, email to ask for a unique submission code to include with your sample to the lab. If you pay via the Erowid site, your testing is much less anonymous.
  • Can you accept bitcoin? Answer: Yes, by paying through Erowid, you can use bitpay. If you do not want to use bitpay, you will need to email to set up a payment to a bitcoin address in a specific amount.
  • Can you test for purity? # Answer: Probably not as you understand it. The results we are allowed to provide for anonymously submitted samples are dissolved and all sugars, salts, and metals are excluded from the analysis. After that, the dissolved sample is analyzed and the relative amounts of detected substances are given. If you mean "purity" relative to other active drugs, then yes. If you mean purity relative to diluting agents, then no. For instance, the 'purity' of powdered drugs such as cocaine usually means whether there are any salts, sugars, or other fillers, but the 'purity' of a tablet is usually considered whether a tablet contains any other drug. Our testing service can not provide quantitative results or provide information about inactive components of a sample.
  • Why do some results show actual quantities in milligrams? Answer: Ecstasy publishes testing results from other groups and programs that are not restricted by the DEA. EcstasyData cannot accept samples of substances and provide results with actual quantitative results. In France, Spain, the Netherlands, and other countries the rules are different -- although we no of no program similar to EcstasyData anywhere in the world that accepts samples anonymously through the mail and publishes the results publicly.
  • Can I get the GC/MS output from the analysis? Answer: Not usually. The lab only supplies the GC/MS output for samples they cannot identify. There are no exceptions.
  • Can the lab identify substance XXXXX? Answer: It depends. The simple answer is that anything the lab has previously detected and identified, then definitely yes. Other than that, it's very difficult to describe what can be detected and can't be. Fillers like simple sugars, salts, chalk and the like do not show up via GC/MS and our lab does not report them. Many new, novel substances will be found but not identified. We take all unidentified results and attempt to learn what they are, but often it takes months or years to identify these new substances. We have a list of all substances our project has ever detected on this year-by-year table of detected substances. Any drug we've detected before, we can detect again. And we can detect and identify thousands of other drugs as well.
  • I'm sending my sample from Canada / Britain and I'm worried about it being stopped by customs. Answer: We receive samples each month from outside the United States and in 14 years of running this testing program, no one has reported that a sample was seized by customs. You can identify the contents of your mail as "analytical sample" or "lab sample" and use thin bubble wrap to keep the package as thin as possible. Thin envelopes are less subject to inspection than packages. Note that samples coming from Canada seem to take longer than anywhere else, we believe Canadian postal customs are very slow, so add a week (or two weeks near holidays) to the amount of time you expect it to take to get to the lab.
  • How do I differentiate my sample from others that you get at the same time? Answer: You can append a 5 digit unique code to the name you write on your submission form. "G Lady 3219". We will include that unique code on the page with the results. However, we have never had two samples named the same thing from different places in a single batch, so this is more a theoretical problem than a real one. In 2014, we are hoping to implement a new submission system that will assign a unique ID, but we do not currently have the coding capacity to implement and test this.
  • Why is the testing so expensive? Answer: Unfortunately, $100 to $150 is actually cheap for doing this type of testing :(. Our lab and others like it now charge $200 or more for GC/MS analysis. The lab has recently increased the cost to Erowid to $140 because of the decreasing value of the US Dollar / inflation. Erowid spent over $10,000 in direct costs we paid to the lab in 2011, *over* the amount sent in by sample submitters. DanceSafe currently underwrites part of the costs of this program, but Erowid has no other financial support for this project.
  • Can you test a liquid or oil sample? # Answer: Unfortunately, no. As of July 2016, our lab does not accept liquid (or gummy, or oily) samples. If you can evaporate a small amount (a microwave or low temperature heat) and scrape up a powder to send, that will work. If it's something more like LSD or very very low doses, you can drop it on paper and send the paper (wrapped in plastic, plastic baggie, etc). Liquid samples are not currently allowed for complicated technical reasons. It is possible that liquid samples can be accepted for $500 per sample, though each sample would require specific permission because of the technical issues. If it is not dry and remains gloppy or liquidy, the lab will not analyze the sample.
  • Do you know of another lab that can do this type of testing? Answer: We do not know of any lab that will accept anonymous samples and provide analytical results. We also do not know of a general purpose solid-phase (as opposed to liquid testing, like urine or blood) analysis service. If anyone knows of a service like that, in any country, please let us know. There are systems specific to countries, in the Netherlands or in Spain via Energy Control, but we don't know of anything that can do this testing. See About Data Sources.
  • Does the payment have to be in US Dollars?# Answer: Yes, because of the lab's limitations, payments MUST be in USD. Cash or money order (talk to your bank). We realize this is a huge inconvenience for people outside the US, but we have no option. If you are willing to pay through erowid (much less anonymous), an additional donation of $20 is required to cover the overhead of payment processing and getting the lab the money. Use Erowid Ecstasy Donations / Payments, and indicate in the notes that it is a payment for an ecstasydata tablet. We will send you back instructions. Sorry for the annoyance, we wish there were a better solution.
  • Can I pay via credit card?# Answer: Yes, but this is much less anonymous. If you are willing to pay through erowid, you can use a credit card or paypal, but an additional donation of $20 is required to cover the overhead of payment processing and getting the lab the money. Use Erowid Ecstasy Donations / Payments, and indicate in the notes that it is a payment for an ecstasydata tablet. We will send you back instructions. Sorry for the annoyance, we wish there were a better solution.
  • Can the results be expedited or completed faster?#. Answer: No. Unfortunately, there is no way to expedite the results. Making sure your sample arrives at the lab as quickly as possible is the only thing that can speed up the results, though paying for overnight shipping could still result in having 2-3 weeks between sending the sample and the results being posted to the site.
  • Can you test LSD/Acid? # Answer: Yes, mostly. LSD is a complex molecule with four nearly identical isomers, only one of which is the active chemical known as d-LSD or "Acid". The lab's GC/MS testing process cannot differentiate between those isomers and may not be able to differentiate LSD from lumi-LSD and other nearly identical break down products. Ecstasydata's lab can differentiate LSD and LSD-like substances from the NBOMes, DOx-compounds (DOI, DOM, DOC, etc), "fly" substances, 5-MeO-AMT, and other compounds with very different structures.
  • Can you identify what's in a tablet based on a photo or description? # Answer: No. Never. Our program analyzes and collects lab analysis of samples. We cannot identify the contents of a tablet or powder from a photo or description. Although most tablets with the identical imprints are made in batches, it is also common for copycat tablets or styles to be made. One blue lightning tablet might contain MDMA and another might not. We suggest forums and community discussions like Reddit and PillReports.com as well as getting reagent testing kits and using those to help rule in and rule out certain substances. But, practically, there is no way to positively identify the contents of a tablet from a photo or description.
  • Can you test for heavy metals like lead or mercury? # Answer: No. Our lab does not do tests for heavy metals. If you believe your sample contains heavy metals, there are many labs that specialize in that. Take a small amount of the material you want tested and send it to them asking for a heavy metals analysis. There are also some home tests for lead, arsenic, and mercury that can be purchased online. You dissolve your sample in water and then test the water with and without your sample. Some ground water contains metals, so you have to confirm that the starting water doesn't contain them to begin with.


If you want information about sending in a sample for testing, please see the Send Tablet page. For other comments and questions, you can use this form or email us at info at ecstasydata dot org.