How Long Does Cocaine Stay in Your System? - AspenRidge
cocaine bag

The length of time cocaine is detectable in urine depends on several variables, like how long and how much you’ve been using, and the type of test used. Urine analysis (UAs) is by far the most commonly used method of drug testing. How long does cocaine stay in your system? For those who occasionally use the drug, coke or its metabolites will show up a urine test for up to five days, but three days is generally the average. A chronic user may test positive in urine tests for up to two weeks.

Cocaine urine test

What Influences How Long Cocaine is Found In The Body?

  • Amount ingested
  • Frequency of ingestion
  • Liver and kidney function
  • Date of last use
  • Body size
  • pH of urine

How Is Cocaine Metabolized?

Cocaine is metabolized by enzymes found in the blood and liver. The primary metabolite (the chemical compound byproducts your body breaks cocaine down into) found in UAs is benzoylecgonine and also ecgonine methyl ester. Benzoylecgonine is the primary metabolite screened for in drug tests because its concentration in urine can be 50 to 100 times greater than cocaine.

After smoking, cocaine is quickly absorbed with concentrations in the blood peaking at about five minutes. When snorted, blood plasma concentrations peak at 30-40 minutes. Cocaine’s half-life is the timeframe for the concentrations in the blood to be reduced by 50%.

One study found the average half-life of cocaine to be:

  • Urine elimination = 4 hours and ten minutes
  • Blood plasma elimination: 1 hour & 30 minutes
  • Saliva elimination = 1 hours & 20 minutes

Cocaine has several methods of ingestion. It’s most commonly snorted (insufflating) through the nose, rubbed into the gums (a numby), or injected intravenously. Cocaine is also smoked (called freebase or crack) but requires additional processing to make it smokable.

blood test for cocaine

Does Cocaine Stay In Your System Longer If Mixed With Alcohol?

Yes. When the liver breaks down coke combined with alcohol, the metabolite cocaethylene is created, and it takes longer for the body to eliminate the substance. Mixing cocaine and alcohol is more dangerous than using either drug on its own. Using cocaine with alcohol or even after drinking can cause an up to a 30% increase in blood cocaine levels. Mixing drugs can be dangerous, even with over-the-counter medications, and but cocaethylene is linked to a significantly higher risk of death.

How Long Does Cocaine Last?

The amount of time that you will be high depends on the method of ingestion, frequency of use, and various metabolic factors.  However, generally speaking:

  • Snorting: 45-90 minutes
  • Smoking: 15-25 minutes
  • Injecting: 15-20 minutest AAC, we believe

What Does Cocaine Do To The Body?

Cocaine can damage your body with both short- and long-term use.

Long-term effects of cocaine:

  • Gastrointestinal problems
  • Raspatory problems and distress
  • Skin infections
  • Vein collapse
  • ·  Perforated septum (a hole in the middle of the nose)

Short-term effects of cocaine:

  • Elevated body temperature
  • Paranoia
  • Irritability
  • Insomnia
  • Tremors
  • Dilated pupils
  • Rapid and sometimes incoherent speech
  • Unpredictable behavior

Signs of Cocaine Use

If you’re wondering if someone you care about has been using coke, there are some warning signs to be on the lookout for. People using cocaine often exhibit some of the following signs:

  • Runny nose
  • Weight loss
  • Mood swings
  • Social isolation
  • Risky behaviors
  • Nosebleeds
  • Boost in confidence
  • Talkative habits
  • Changes in sleeping and eating patterns
  • White powder residue around the nose and mouth
  • Burn marks on the hands and lips
  • Deterioration in hygiene habits
  • Financial difficulties
  • Loss of interest in things that once brought joy
  • Increased need for privacy
  • Spoons, razor blades, plastic baggies, and other drug paraphernalia in the person’s room or clothing pockets

Signs of Cocaine Withdrawal

Another way to possibly tell if a loved one is using cocaine is to look out for withdrawal symptoms. Cocaine is highly addictive, and the body will become dependent with regular use. Cocaine withdrawal is defined by three phases, all being rather unpleasant.

Phase One: “the crash” develops rapidly following the end of use. In heavy users, cocaine withdrawal consisted of “acute dysphoria, irritability and anxiety, increased desire for sleep, exhaustion, increased appetite, decreased craving to use.”

Phase Two: “withdrawal” symptoms after the crash included intense cravings, limited concentration, and being irritable and lethargic for up to 10 weeks.

Phase Three: “extinction” describes a period post-withdrawal characterized by some cravings when triggered.

Treatment for Cocaine Addiction

If you’re searching for answers on how long cocaine stays in your system, you probably have an upcoming drug test. If you’re on probation and are still using illegal drugs, you should consider addiction treatment. If legal consequences have no effect on your decision-making process regarding drug use, you probably have a problem. But there is a way out of cocaine addiction.

AspenRidge Recovery is a safe place to seek help. Our dually licensed therapists will create an individualized treatment plan that unique to you and your situation. We know seeking treatment is a big step and it’s normal to be sacred or question how you’ll possibly make it work with work and family obligations. We are a 100% outpatient treatment center with programs that range from 31 hours per week to three hours. We have a program that will work with your life. Give us a call at 855-281-5588, and speak to one of our addiction specialists. We’ll listen to your story and make a recommendation for treatment.

If you’re not ready yet, bookmark this page and think about it. Getting clean is a big step and most of us who’ve been through treatment know it talks time to come to the right decision. We’ll be here when you’re ready.