Should I take a breath or blood test if I am pulled over for a DUI in Nevada?

Posted by Neil Shouse | Sep 23, 2014 | 0 Comments

There are pros and cons to both breath tests and blood tests in Nevada DUI cases.

Breathalyzer tests in Nevada DUI cases:


  • Breathalyzers test only for alcohol, so they will not show if the person is high as opposed to drunk. But note that if the cop suspects the driver is high, the cop can get a warrant and force the driver to take a blood test anyway.
  • Breath tests are less invasive than blood tests.


  • Breathalyzers can give false positives for DUI due to such medical conditions as rising acid reflux, GERD, or heartburn.
  • There is no way to preserve a person's breath for evidentiary purposes. In contrast, blood can be saved for re-testing.

Blood tests in Nevada DUI cases:


  • Currently it takes several weeks for blood results to come back, so drivers who choose blood tests can hold on to their driver's licenses in the meantime. If people test positive for DUI after a breath test, the police take away their licenses immediately.
  • Blood tests are typically more accurate. So drivers who know they have no drugs or alcohol in their system may want to consider the blood test.


  • Blood tests can be painful.
  • Law enforcement use blood to test not only for alcohol but also for drugs.

Read more information about Nevada DUI breath tests and Nevada DUI blood tests. Also check out our articles, "Do I need a lawyer if I get a DUI in Nevada?" and "Is hypoglycemia a DUI defense in Nevada?"

About the Author

Neil Shouse

Southern California DUI Defense attorney Neil Shouse graduated with honors from UC Berkeley and Harvard Law School (and completed additional graduate studies at MIT).


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