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How Long Does Morphine Stay in Your System?

Morphine is an opioid medication used to treat moderate to severe pain.[1] While this medication is effective in treating the symptoms of pain, it is not intended for long-term use. This is because morphine can be extremely habit-forming. In other words, if you use morphine frequently you are likely to develop an addiction to the medication. 

Morphine addiction is a serious condition that must be treated by a professional drug treatment program. Mandala Healing Center is an addiction treatment program that combines evidence-based therapies with holistic addiction treatment modalities. If you or a loved one are addicted to morphine, contact us today.

If you or a loved one abuses morphine, knowing how long it stays in your system is important for a couple of reasons. The main reason is that understanding how long morphine lasts in your system can prevent accidental overdoses. Additionally, it is important to avoid dangerous drug interactions by taking other medications too soon after consuming morphine. 

What Are The Effects of Morphine and How Long Do They Last?

Morphine is a pain-relieving medication that causes euphoric effects when abused. When you take more than you are prescribed, you may feel calm, sleepy, and lightheaded. The effects typically begin 30 minutes after it is consumed. However, the onset of morphine depends on how it is abused. 

The common effects of morphine include:

  • Feelings of euphoria
  • Pain relief
  • Constriction of the pupils
  • Decreased gastrointestinal activity (constipation)
  • Drowsiness, lightheadedness, or dizziness
  • Altered mental state 
  • Feelings similar to dysphoria 

Morphine comes in a liquid solution and as an extended-release tablet. If you take the liquid form, you can expect it to take effect within 15-60 minutes and last anywhere from 4 to 6 hours. On the other hand, the extended-release morphine tablet will deliver the effects of the drug periodically, lasting anywhere from 12-24 hours. Knowing how long the type of morphine you are taking is important because it can prevent you from taking too much at a time.

How is Morphine Metabolized in Your Body?

According to The National Institutes of Health, “Morphine is primarily metabolized in the liver by uridine-5′-diphosphate (UDP) glucuronosyltransferase, with specific affinity for the UGT2B7 isoenzyme. This isoenzyme is responsible for the formation of both glucuronide species but at different amounts (5 times more M3G than M6G).”[2]

When you take morphine, the substance is broken down by glucuronidation and sulfation. In other words, morphine is combined with glucuronide acids to form a water-soluble compound so your body can metabolize the substance. Glucuronide is the substance that shows up on drug tests when you are tested for morphine. 

How Long Morphine Can Be Detected in Your System

Because morphine is a short-acting opioid, it has a short half-life. This means that when you take morphine it will no longer be detectable by urine within 72 hours. Because of the way the drug is metabolized, people usually use urine and saliva tests when drug testing for morphine. However, blood tests and hair follicle tests can detect morphine as well. 

Blood Tests 

Blood testing is less common as it is considered to be invasive and less cost-effective. However, some employers and addiction treatment centers may use blood tests for morphine in certain situations. If a blood test is used, morphine can be detected for up to 3 days after your last dose. 

Urine Tests

Urinalysis drug testing is the most common form of drug testing, especially when you are being tested for morphine. This is because urine tests are less expensive, easy to use, and great at detecting certain metabolites. Morphine will show up on a urine drug test for up to four days after your last dose.

Saliva Tests

Saliva testing is not as common because it is not FDA-approved due to the possibility of inaccuracy. However, some people continue to use saliva tests for drug testing situations where the results are not used for legal purposes. With that being said, morphine can show up in a saliva drug test for up to 3 days after your last dose.

Hair Follicle Tests 

Hair follicle tests are less common because they are known to be expensive. However, hair follicle tests are extremely accurate and provide the largest window of time for detection. Morphine can be detected in a hair follicle test for up to 90 days after your last dosage. 

Factors That Influence Morphine Detection Time

While morphine is always metabolized in the same manner, the detection time may differ from person to person. This is because everyone’s metabolism is different, causing some individuals to test positive longer than others. For example, if you have a liver or kidney condition it may take longer for your body to metabolize morphine.

Other factors that influence the detection time of morphine include:

  • Dosage 
  • Age 
  • Taking additional medications
  • Hydration levels
  • Physical activity 

Find Help for Morphine Abuse and Addiction

If you or a loved one abuses morphine on a regular basis, it may be time to consider opioid addiction treatment. Morphine addiction can lead to serious long-term effects, including dangerous withdrawal symptoms and overdose. Mandala Healing Center is here to help you heal from the physical, mental, and spiritual effects of addiction. Contact us today for more information on how to find help for morphine abuse and addiction.