Medical Defenses to Breath Tests

Many Ohio DUI cases involve a breath test, either at the police station or during the traffic stop. The law can make it difficult to challenge breath test results, because it assumes that the tests are accurate with minimal proof. But Columbus DUI lawyer Peter Binning understands the law as well as the science behind the breath test, and knows that there are a number of medical reasons why your breath test results should not be used against you.

As mentioned on the Evidential Breath Testing page, individuals with GERD or acid reflux can hold onto alcohol in their stomachs for longer than other people. When people with these or similar conditions burp, hiccup, or otherwise expel air, these alcohol molecules are registered by the machine and contribute to a higher-than-accurate reading.

Breathalyzer devices are equipped with a mechanism called a “slope detector” that is supposed to detect the presence of residual alcohol particles in your mouth and stop the testing process. But numerous independent studies have shown that these devices are not always capable of picking up on trace amounts of mouth alcohol.

Dental work—like dentures, crowns or braces—or mouth piercings can throw off your results as well. These devices can trap alcohol in their crevices, then release the alcohol molecules when you blow into the machine and spike up your breathalyzer reading. This alcohol could not possibly have caused you to become drunk because it never entered your system, but it will nevertheless factor into the breathalyzer’s calculations and you will be charged with a DWI.

If you have been arrested with an Ohio DUI, your best bet is to call Columbus DUI attorneyPeter Binning. You have GERD or acid reflux, dental implants or piercings or any other condition that could have led to a false breathalyzer result, call him today for a free case review.