How long does Dilaudid stay in your system?
Dilaudid is the brand name for a prescription pain reliever that contains hydromorphone. Hydromorphone is generally detected in urine screens for 2-3 days after use, about the same detection window as hydrocodone in your body. More on the bioavailability, half life, and drug testing for Dilaudid here.
What is Dilaudid used for?
Dilaudid is the band name for hydromorphone and is a derivative of morphine. Dilaudid is an opioid analgesic and is used for pain relief. As a comparison, hydromorphone is approximately 2-8 times more potent than morphine and is often sought as a substitute for heroin by narcotics addicts.
How do you take Dilaudid?
Dilaudid is available in immediate release forms and can be taken as an inject-able medication, an oral liquid, tablets, and/or suppositories. Therapeutic doses range from 1 to 10 mg.
But Dilaudid can also be abused outside of medical use by crushing, chewing, snorting, or injecting the dissolved product. These modes of administration, however, pose risk of addiction, overdose or death to the user.
Peak levels and half life of hydromorphone
After oral administration of 8 mg of Dilaudid liquid or tablets, peak plasma hydromorphone concentrations are generally achieved within 30 minutes to an hour. The half life of hydromorphone is related to mode of administration. The terminal elimination half-life of hydromorphone after an intravenous dose is about 2.3 hours. Following oral administration, hydromorphone demonstrates an elimination half-life of approximately 4.1 hours.
Hydromorphone may also be expected to have additive effects when used with alcohol, other opioids, or illicit drugs that cause central nervous system depression.
Dilaudid drug testing
Drug testing for Dilaudid in the blood, urine, hair or saliva is usually accurate. However, the detection time varies by type of drug screen, dosage, size of the person being tested, etc. In general terms, drugs like Dilaudid are detected in blood on the scale of hours while they are detected in urine on the scale of days.
As an anagesic prescription medicine, Dilaudid can be identified as an “expanded opiate” in a standard opiate screen. Dilaudid also requires a lower cutoff concentration during initial and confirmation drug screens (300 ng/mL) when compared to other opiates (2000 ng/ml). So how long does Dilaudid stay in the body?
Blood: <24 hours after last use
Hair: 3-6 months after last use
Saliva: 2-3 days after last use
Urine: 2-3 days after last use
Dilaudid and addiction
As an opioid analgesic, Dilaudid is a medicine with one of the highest potential for abuse of all prescription medications. Why is this? Medications like Dilaudid act with central nervous system opiate receptors to produce pain relieving effects. One additional side effect that occurs when taking opioids is euphoric effect. Taking Dilaudid to get high can lead to chronic use. Taking Dilaudid over time can then lead to physical dependence, tolerance and withdrawal when dosage is lowered or stopped altogether.
Problems with Dilaudid?
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Reference sources: Commonwealth of Virginia info on Controlled Substance Testing Programs
Daily Med drug info on Dilaudid
DEA drug information on hydromorphone
NIDA Research Monograph Series: Urine Testing for Drugs of Abuse
Interpretation of Oral Fluid Tests for Drugs of Abuse
Quest Diagnostics presentation to DOI: Current &Alternative Forms and Statistical Trends in Workplace Drug Testing
Department of Justice toxicology protocols for substance use