How long does Tramadol stay in your system?

Tramadol doesn’t stay in your system very long – a day or two for most users. However, some techniques, particularly hair testing, can reveal past Tramadol use. More on Tramadol detection here.

minute read
Reviewed by: Dr. Dili Gonzalez, M.D.

Tramadol will show up on some drug tests, but doesn’t stay in your system long-term.

In fact, Tramadol shows up on drug screens and is detected in tramadol-specific blood and urine screens only 2-4 days after use. However, hair testing can show past Tramadol use, even when it is no longer in your system. Keep reading for information on Tramadol testing, abuse, and resources. And we welcome your questions about Tramadol screening or use at the end.

Main Tramadol uses

Classified as an opiate agonist, Tramadol changes the way the body senses pain to help provide relief. Tramadol is used to relieve moderate to moderately severe pain. Tramadol can also be used to help with neuropathic pain (pain caused by the damage to peripheral nerves). The extended release version of Tramadol is used to treat moderate, chronic pain.

How do you take Tramadol?

Tramadol is taken in the form of a tablet, as needed. Tramadol is also available in an extended-release formula, which is only prescribed to people who need to be able to take the medication around-the-clock. When abused, the pain medication might be crushed and snorted. Tramadol can also be dissolved in water and then injected. Either of these methods, however, can cause serious side effects or death.

Peak levels and half life of Tramadol

When does Tramadol kick in?  In an hour or less. Tramadol hits its peak blood plasma level an hour and a half after the drug is taken. It has a half life of 6 hours.

Tramadol drug testing: How long does tramadol stay in the body?

Like many similar medications, Tramadol does not stay in the body long. Hair samples will reveal drug use further in the past than blood or urine screens, which are only reliable for a day or two.  So drug testing for Tramadol can be ordered in blood, urine or hair samples.

How long does Tramadol stay in blood?

After more than a couple of days, it’s unlikely that Tramadol will be detected in the blood. This detection window for Tramadol in blood samples is a little longer for the extended-release version than for the regular variety of the drug.

How long does Tramadol stay in hair?

Most drugs can be detected far longer in hair than they can be in urine or blood. Hair samples may be able to test positive for Tramadol weeks or months after exposure to the drug. But the Tramadol detection period in hair sample drug tests depends on a few different factors, including hair length, dosage, and the person’s metabolism.

How long does Tramadol stay in urine?

Tramadol will show up on urine screens for 2-4 days after use. However, Tramadol may show up a for a few days after last dose with heavy or chronic use. But in most cases, if someone hasn’t taken the drug within 48 hours, the levels are undetectable.

Tramadol: long term use and addiction

Tramadol is an addictive medication with serious side effects when taken long term.  Not only can Tramadol create a physical dependence with long term use, Tramadol  causes seizures even when taken in prescribed amounts over a long period of time.  Furthermore,  suddenly stopping Tramadol will cause withdrawal symptoms which can range from minor and unpleasant to serious.

Problems with Tramadol?

If you think that you might have a problem with Tramadol, you probably do. But there is help for narcotics addicts. A local doctor or clinic should be able to direct you to resources and help you deal with possible Tramadol addiction. Addiction specialists use a medical or therapeutic approach, or a combination of the two. There might be support groups in your area, like Narcotics Anonymous, that can help you through the process of quitting Tramadol.

Tramadol in your system questions

Do you still have questions about Tramadol in your system? Please leave your questions here. We will be happy to try to answer them ASAP personally!

Reference sources: PubMed Health: Tramadol
Virginia DMME: Drug Free Workplace drug testing protocol
Wisconsin Crime Laboratory System: Toxicology
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.
Medical Reviewers
Dr. Dili Gonzalez, M.D. is a general surgeon practicing women's focused medici...

All of the information on this page has been reviewed and verified by a licensed medical professional.

I am ready to call
i Who Answers?