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How Long Does LSD Stay in Your System?

Lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD) is an extremely potent hallucinogenic drug that is derived from a fungus that grows on rye and other similar grains. This substance currently has no medicinal uses in the United States and is considered to have a high potential for abuse.[1]

LSD is also commonly referred to as acid. When someone abuses acid, they usually place a blotter paper on their tongue that has been dipped in liquid LSD. There are also gel tabs and sugar cubes that contain LSD. 

People tend to misuse this substance to experience vivid hallucinations, which are often referred to as a trip or a spiritual experience. If you or a loved one abuse LSD, you might be wondering how long it stays in your system. 

How Long Do the Effects of LSD Last?

LSD can cause a variety of effects, including visual, auditory, and tactile hallucinations. You might also experience dilated pupils, increased body temperature, and a distorted perception of your senses and time. It is also possible to experience a “bad trip,” which means the effects become scary and unenjoyable. 

The length of time that LSD will affect you depends on the dose you take and how you consume it.[2]

  • If you take a typical dose of 100 to 250 micrograms of LSD by mouth, the effects will begin within 30 to 45 minutes and last 9 to 12 hours. 
  • Individuals who inject the same dose of LSD intramuscularly will experience effects within 15 to 20 minutes that last between 9 to 10 hours.
  • If you inject 40 to 180 micrograms of LSD intravenously, the effects will begin within 3 to 5 minutes and last between 9 to 10 hours.

Most doses of LSD will last about 10 hours no matter how you consume it..

How is LSD Metabolized in the Body?

When you consume LSD, it is absorbed by your digestive tract. From there, your liver will break LSD down into metabolites known as 2-oxy-LSD and 2-oxo-3-hydroxy LSD. These are the chemicals that drug tests look for to determine if you have abused acid recently.

The half-life of LSD is approximately 3.6 hours.[3] The half-life of a drug explains how long it takes your body to eliminate half of a single dose. It usually takes 4 to 5 half-lives for LSD to be completely removed from your system, meaning it could take 15 hours for LSD to leave your body. 

How Long Does LSD Remain in Your System?

How long LSD remains in your system will depend on a variety of factors, like the rate of your metabolism, the dose you consume, and how frequently you abuse it. Other factors include the health of your liver, whether you abused other drugs, and how much food or water you have consumed that day. 

While it typically takes up to 15 hours for your body to eliminate LSD from your system, metabolites may remain in parts of your body longer. These metabolites are what drug tests look for to determine whether LSD is in your system. 


Urine tests are the most commonly used form of drug tests because they are minimally invasive and relatively cheap. Most frequently, urine tests will be used when you are applying for a new job or entering a drug rehab program. These tests can detect LSD in your urine for 2 to 4 days after you last consumed it.


Saliva tests are not commonly used to detect LSD because the metabolites of this drug do not remain in your saliva for very long. Saliva tests can detect LSD in your system for 8 to 16 hours after you last used it. 


Blood tests are not commonly used for LSD testing because the window of detection is rather short. However, they are often used in hospital settings to determine whether a substance is contributing to your symptoms. Blood tests can detect acid in your system for up to 12 hours after your last dose.


Hair tests are the most reliable form of drug test, as the metabolites of a variety of drugs remain in the follicles of your hair for a long time. However, sending these tests off to the lab for testing can be expensive, so this is not done frequently. If you are using a hair test to detect LSD, you can test positive for up to 90 days after your last dose.

Find Help for LSD Abuse 

If you or a loved one frequently abuses LSD, you must seek help. Long-term LSD abuse can have negative and lasting impacts on your physical or mental health. Thankfully, drug rehab programs like Mandala Healing Center can provide you with the tools and support you need to stay sober. 

To learn more about how we can help you overcome LSD abuse, please contact us today.


  1. The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA): LSD, Retrieved September 2023 From
  2. The National Library of Medicine (NLM): Lysergic Acid Diethylamide (LSD), Retrieved September 2023 From
  3. The National Library of Medicine (NLM): Pharmacokinetics and Pharmacodynamics of Lysergic Acid Diethylamide in Healthy Subjects, Retrieved September 2023 From