How Long Does Morphine Stay in Your System?

People who know how narcotic drugs work will understand what morphine can do to their body. It is one of the commonly prescribed opiate analgesics that changes the way our brain reacts to pain. The answer to how long does morphine stay in your system will help you figure an approximate timespan you will be free of pain from one morphine dosage.

A doctor will prescribe you morphine dosage to relieve moderate to severe pain, only when they cannot reduce it otherwise. Knowing how long the drug stays in your system helps prevent accidental overdose and side effects.

How does morphine affect our body?

There are different forms of morphine and your doctor might give you tablets, capsules, or liquid solution. The type of morphine you consume will determine the frequency. You need to follow the prescription in order to not overdose or underdose your system.

The effect of morphine happens anywhere between 15 minutes to 1 hour and lasts for around 4 to 6 hours. Morphine dosage has a short half-life and half of one dose metabolized within 2 to 7 hours. A single dose of the drug goes out through urine within 3 days. How long does morphine stay in your system will be determined by the form of medicine you take and measure.

The drug helps you suppress physical pain by influencing your nervous system. Other than making you forget the pain it gives you a happy high. Morphine makes you feel euphoric, forget depression, reduce gastrointestinal activities and delusions.

Your body, however, needs time to cope up with the effect of morphine and to understand desired effects. Just like other narcotic drugs, you can get depended on morphine and have withdrawal symptoms when you stop. However, you need to follow a proper schedule that your doctor prescribes, even if that means going to withdrawals.

What to avoid when you have morphine in the system?

Morphine suppresses respiratory system and slower heart rate. The drug is risky enough to put you into a coma. You can face dangerous morphine side effects if you consume it with benzodiazepines, barbiturates, MAO inhibitors, antidepressants, antihistamines, and more. You cannot drink any type of alcohol when you’re under morphine medication.

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To know if you can consume morphine, your doctor needs to first assess the kind of medicines you take already. It is a crucial process to ensure that you don’t go through dangerous interactions. You cannot start, stop, or change regular medication of morphine unless your doctor asks you to.

If you have a history of breathing disorders like COPD or asthma, you cannot consume morphine. You cannot breastfeed if you take morphine as it passes onto your baby through the milk you produce. Expecting women need to ask their doctor before taking morphine. Taking the drug can leave a negative impact on the growing baby in the womb.

How does morphine metabolize?

Metabolism refers to how our body absorbs what we consume. Just like food, even medicines are metabolized when we swallow or inject it. The way you administer the drug determines how long it stays in your blood stream. For example, if you inject morphine, the peak level of the medicinal effect reflects in the blood within 20 minutes. It takes anywhere between 30 to 90 minutes for morphine level to hit the peak when you consume it in tablet form.

The injection hits you quickly because the drug hits your brain. But when you have a tablet or capsule, it goes through your liver before reaching the brain. The liver metabolizes some portion of the drug. The metabolites of morphine include:

  • Hydromorphone
  • Normorphine
  • Morphine 6 glucuronide
  • Morphine 3 glucuronide

Some of it excrete as urine while the rest stay in the blood and shoots up to the brain. Morphine gives a gradual relief to the brain but does come with several side effects. It travels through the body again, reaches the liver, and continues until it breaks down completely.

Drugs like codeine and heroin convert into morphine when it goes into the body. Thus, a positive drug test indicates usage of morphine.

Half-life of Morphine

The half-life of a substance refers to the timespan within which half of the drug is absorbed by a human body. Suppose, you insert 10 mg of morphine in your body. The time it will take to use up 5 mg (half of 10 mg) denotes the half-life of the drug.

Usually, the half-life of one morphine dosage is anywhere from 2 to 4 hours. It varies according to how the drug was taken and the capability of the body to react to it. Factors like age, weight, liver health, genetics, gender, and diet will determine how long does morphine stay in your system.

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An insignificant amount of around 3% stays in your body after five half-lives. There are many factors that determine how long morphine stays in the blood. There can be rare but possible situations where morphine stays in the blood for 10 to 15 hours. You can take tests to detect that as it takes 1-3 days for your body to excrete it through urine.

The morphine drug is powerful and overdose can be fatal. Side effects of morphine include breathing problem, fainting, vomiting, and diarrhea. People who shouldn’t consume morphine must keep away as it can cause death. If you know someone who is addicted to morphine, you must help that person come out of it through rehabilitation.

How to prevent morphine overdose?

Morphine overdose is possible when you couple it with other medications or when two doses are close to each other. Overdose can also be possible when morphine is taken nonmedically or as injections. Symptoms of morphine overdose include:

  • Irregular breathing
  • Loss of consciousness
  • Sleepiness
  • Weak muscles
  • Clammy skin
  • Small pupils
  • Slow heartbeat
  • Nausea
  • Blurred vision
  • Fainting

How long does morphine stay in your system?

72 hours is the maximum time that one dose of morphine can stay in your body. However, when you use it frequently or take a heavy dose, it can remain for a longer span of time. People who depend on morphine dosage can experience withdrawal symptoms within 6 to 12 hours after the last dose.

If your doctor has given you morphine dosage, you must keep a check on the effect through a urine drug test. Disclose the prescription to a pharmacy after the test and consult with the doctor to analyze the exact amount you can consume.

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