How long does lorazepam last?

Single doses of lorazepam usually last for 6-8 hours. More here on lorazepam duration of action, time in the body and how long lorazepam effects last here.

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Lorazepam effects usually last for 6-8 hours for single doses. The same duration is true if you are trying to get high on lorazepam but euphoric effect has been self-reported up to 10 hours. And some effects of therapeutic doses can last for up to 72 hours. More here on how lorazepam affects the body and its duration of action. You can learn more about random and pre-employment drug testing methods and detection times in our ultimate guide. Plus, we invite your questions about lorazepam in the comments section at the end.

Lorazepam duration of action

The duration of any drug’s action depends on several factors. The factors which can influence lorazepam duration of action include:

  • lorazepam’s half-life
  • the absolute amount of lorazepam you take
  • the activity of lorazepam metabolites
  • the influence of disease on drug elimination
  • the pharmaceutical preparation of lorazepam

Lorazepam time in body

Lorazepam is readily absorbed by the body with an absolute bioavailability of 90%. But when do lorazepam levels peak in the body? And when is it totally eliminated from the body?

Peak concentrations of lorazepam (20 ng/mL for a 2 mg dose) in plasma occur approximately 2 hours following administration. The average half-life of lorazepam is about 12 hours, which means that is takes about 12 hours for the amount of lorazepam in your body to decrease by half. Unlike other medications, advancing age does not have a significant effect on how long lorazepam stays in your system, although clearance of lorazepam is somewhat reduced in old age. Although lorazepam can stay in small amounts and be detectable in the system for up to 6 weeks after use in heavy users, therapeutic doses of lorazepam are generally out of the body a few days (around 72 hours) after dosing.

How long do lorazepam effects last?

Lorazepam is considered a high-potency benzodiazepine with an intermediate half life. Most therapeutic effects wear off within 6-8 hours. This is why doctors prescribe multiple doses of lorazepam daily for acute episodes of anxiety. But the amount of time lorazepam effects last can depend on its mode of administration. For example, intravenous doses of lorazepam can have prolonged duration of action. This can be helpful in cases of seizure or neurological problems.

In general, the intended effects of the recommended adult dose of lorazepam (Ativan) intra muscular or intravenous injection usually last 6 to 8 hours. However, depending on therapeutic dose, lorazepam can act for up to 72 hours. In rare cases when people receive greater than the recommended dose, excessive sleepiness and prolonged lack of recall have been reported. And as with other benzodiazepines, lorazepam rarely can trigger side effects of unsteadiness and enhanced sensitivity to depressant effects of alcohol and other drugs for more than 24 hours.

How long does a lorazepam high last?

If you use drugs recreationally, you are at risk of developing an addiction to lorazepam. Why? Because lorazepam tends to produce semi-euphoric effects of relatively long duration, about 6-8 hours. Some people self-report lorazepam effects up to 10 hours long. But most people report the heavy depressant effects when of lorazepam is used for getting high such as immobility, falling asleep, or feeling low. Note here that tolerance for benzodiazepines like lorazepam builds quickly, and you can form a lorazepam habit within days of dosing. Plus, sudden withdrawal from lorazepam can provoke seizures, tremens or death.

For more info on the duration of lorazepam high effects, the drug’s addictive potential, what is the best lorazepam addiction treatment program for you, and what you can expect…check out in our A-Z guide on Lorazepam Addiction Treatment Programs and Help.

Lorazepam high effects

Because lorazepam binds to receptors in the brain it has rewarding effects and can make you feel high. But this high can also get you into trouble. Lorazepam can trigger physiologic and psychological dependence based on the drug’s dosage, duration of therapy and potency. This is why lorazepam should be prescribed for only 2-4 weeks.

Do you think that you have a problem with lorazepam? Or do you have more questions about lorazepam use? Please leave us your questions and comments here. We do our best to respond to each question personally, and will do so promptly. We want to hear from you and invite you to anonymously ask us about lorazepam below.

Reference Sources: Daily Med: Lorazepam tablet
PubMed Health: Lorazepam
PubMed: Clinical pharmacokinetics of oxazepam and lorazepam
Drug Digest: Lorazepam tablet
PubMed: Duration of drug action
PubMed: Pharmacokinetic optimization of benzodiazepine therapy for acute seizures. Focus on delivery routes
PubMed: Lorazepam: A New Antiepileptic Drug in Status Epilepticus Therapy
Drug profile for lorazepam
About the author
Lee Weber is a published author, medical writer, and woman in long-term recovery from addiction. Her latest book, The Definitive Guide to Addiction Interventions is set to reach university bookstores in early 2019.
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