How Long Does Cocaine Stay In Your System?

Quick answer:

Calculate The Duration Time For Cocaine (Benzoylecgonine) To Last in Your System From Last Use:

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in Urine

in Blood

in Saliva

in Hair


How Long Does Cocaine Stay In Your System?

Long Answer:
Cocaine/Crack/Coke is a stimulant of the central nervous system that is the cause for a lot of consternation among the law enforcement agencies across the globe because of its addictive nature. In fact, a surprising number of people addicted to cocaine exist on a global basis despite the fact that manufacture, trade and consumption of this substance is strictly illegal. Moreover, cocaine can leave its trace in the system of its users for a reasonable period, which means that they need to be careful about this fact before appearing for any cocaine drug test. Therefore, if you happen to wonder regarding how long does cocaine stay in your system or how long does cocaine last, then you need to take into account a number of factors including the route through which you take this drug.

Even though cocaine remains detectable in the blood for around 48-72 hours since exposure, it can remain for as long as 48-72 hours in case of injection and 24 to 48 hours in case of snorting, Cocaine or Crack can stay in the urine for around 2-5 days, and for chronic, heavy user, it can still be detectable for up to 10 days in the urine.

The longevity of cocaine in the system tends to increase in case of the chronic abusers of this drug because of the gradual buildup of its various metabolic byproducts in the bloodstream, and also in the urine. Moreover, traces of the drug are bound to remain for a considerable period in the hair follicles of regular drug addicts, even after daily showers and shampooing. Among the most popular of the cocaine drug tests is the one that involves the testing of the urine samples of the suspected drug abusers. This test consists of searching for various metabolic byproducts of cocaine such as Benzoylecgonine, coca ethylene, and ecgonine methyl ester. The duration, for which these metabolites remain in detectable quantities in the urine of suspected cocaine abusers, depend upon a number of factors other than the concentration of the dose, and the amount taken in. These factors include the age and gender of the users, as well as, their metabolic rate and general health condition. Therefore, you need to keep these in mind while trying to figure out the answer to the question about how long does cocaine stay in your system.

The cocaine hair test is an excellent choice for detecting traces of cocaine and its metabolite in suspected addicts even days and weeks since their latest exposure to this drug. The hair follicles present during an exposure to cocaine simply refuse to lose all traces of this drug, and this in spite of repeated showing and shampooing. Moreover, the non-invasive nature of this test and ease of procuring vast amount of test sample helps in making it an extremely popular crack cocaine detection test. Therefore, the answer to the query regarding the duration during which cocaine stays in your system in case of this hair test is quite long, in fact up to 90 days in the hair.


The Peak Level of Cocaine

In a study in the ‘Yale Journal of Biology and Medicine’, research was carried out to determine the effects of the duration of cocaine in the body. They made use of the peak-plasma level concepts after intravenous use to study the effects. The tests involved examinations of different types of cocaine such as powdered, and crack. It also involved detection of cocaine in the blood after intra nasal dosing. Results show peak levels do not occur until one hour after administration. Vasoconstriction had shown limits to the absorption of cocaine. In case of oral consumption, the time lag was 30 minutes.

Another 1996 study in the ‘Psychopharmacology Journal‘ saw scientists carryout a study on gender differences after acute administration of cocaine. They chose seven male and seven female occasional cocaine user each for their experiments. They administered identical doses of cocaine hydrochloride and placebo powder in a random order. They withdrew blood samples at 5-minute intervals to assess pharmacokinetic differences. The result showed that males achieved higher peak plasma cocaine levels (144.4 +/- 17.5 ng/ml) than women did. Women who were in the menstrual cycle had higher peak plasma cocaine levels than women during their luteal phase. The peak heart rates did not differ much.

These studies indicate that after cocaine use, there can be a delay of upto 30 minutes, which follows the highest peak of cocaine in the blood, that occurs an hour after last use, after which a decline starts to happen. Also men are likely to have higher levels of cocaine in there system in the first hour, compared to females for the same amount of dosage. However, after the first hour men are shown to metabolize cocaine slightly quicker than females. Also, women who are in the menstrual cycle are shown to metabolize cocaine slower than women during their luteal phase. However the fitness level, and whether one is on medication could affect these times. There are various ways to speed up your metabolism, one of the best ways is to try a detox program.


Where Does Cocaine Come From?

The duration during which how long does cocaine stay in your body will depend largely on whether you have snorted it through your nose, smoked it, or even injected it directly into your bloodstream. However, irrespective of the route of administration, it will have widespread effects on all parts of the body. In fact, derived from the leaf extract of the Coca plant (Erythroxylon coca), this stimulant has been in use since the time of Inca civilization in its native South America for easing pain, fatigue, and hunger. This tropical alkaloid goes by the name of Benzoylmetylecgonine in the scientific circle, and is effective as a tropical anesthetic for numbing the sensation in a number of body parts such as mouth, eye, rectum, and vagina. This is in addition to its ability to act as an appetite suppressant.


The Different Forms:

Cocaine is available in both the crystalline, as well as, the powder. It is the most lethal in the form of crack cocaine which is the cocaine crystal not diffused by acid. However, the most common form of cocaine available in the market is the hydrochloric salt known as cocaine hydrochloric. The hydrochloric of cocaine exists in the form of fine white powder, and users mostly snort it because of its ability to traverse the nasal membranes. Apart from that, many users also prefer to dab it on their gums and teeth, while many others prefer to smoke it. However, some inject it directly into their bloodstream for a stronger and quicker effect, even though health experts agreeing upon it being the most lethal route of administration. Thus, you need to keep in mind the route through which you have taken the drug while trying to figure out the duration of how long does Cocaine stay in your system.

How Long Does Cocaine Stay In Your System?


How Does Cocaine Affect the Mind?

Cocaine acts in much the same way as nicotine and heroin by binding with the proteins involved in the brain cells for the transportation of dopamine. The blockage of the dopamine pathways, and the accumulation of the dopamine molecules in the synapses of the neural cells result in the growing feeling of euphoria and delight for the addict. However, this sense of euphoria is of temporary nature, and lasts so long as the effects of a particular dosage of cocaine last in an addict. The mood curve in the cocaine addicts falls extremely quickly once the effects of cocaine begins to wither away. This leads to the need for administration of cocaine to retain the feeling of euphoria. The growing dosage leads to greater presence of traces of this drug in the addict. Thus, you need to consider the amount of cocaine you had during your latest exposure while trying to figure out the time during which cocaine last in your system. Read more about the effects of cocaine here.


Its Addictive Nature:

The addictive nature of cocaine is due to the intensely euphoric and pleasant sensation it produces immediately after the consumption of this drug. However, the real danger of cocaine’s addictive nature lies in the fact that this pleasurable and euphoric state only lasts for a short period. Once the effects of cocaine consumption come to an end, the mood and feelings of the addict takes a sharp downward spiral. The addict feels a sharp pull towards the need take in more cocaine because of the intense feeling of depression and lethargy that follows the high or the pleasurable sensation induced by this drug. The addicts feel the need to sustain the sense of euphoria by constantly taking in more cocaine at regular intervals, and in this way prolong the high induced by it. However, even more intense feeling of depression, irritability, and weariness follows this ‘high’ every time.  Thus, you need to consider the extent of cocaine abuse while calculating the duration coke stay in your system.


How Long Before Cocaine Starts Taking its Affect:

Cocaine can enter the system and begin affecting the central nervous system in around about half an hour in case of addicts chewing the dried leaves from coca plant. On the other hand, the drug takes round about 20 minutes to reach its peak level in addicts snorting it, and it can retain the peak effects for about an hour in the body. However, the most effective mean for the cocaine to show its effects is in case of injecting this drug directly into the bloodstream in which case it takes just over 3 minutes for the users to feel its peak effects. The duration for which the drug retains its peak effects differ according to the route used to take it by the addicts, with the option to smoke it producing the shortest period of high. On the other hand, injecting it makes the addict feel its pleasing effects for the longest possible duration, even though it proves to be the most harmful for their health in the long run. Thus, injecting cocaine, and on a chronic basis is most likely to prove inconvenient to you in case you wish to appear for any cocaine drug test, since it is responsible for having cocaine last in your system for the longest.

The Bottom Line:

It can be practically impossible to know for sure the duration after which your body is going to lose all traces of cocaine, and make you clean enough to avoid detection in any cocaine drug tests. The best option available is to avoid it totally because of its addictive nature, which makes it extremely difficult to kick this habit later on. However, now you have become more aware regarding the way cocaine works, you can take evasive action to ensure next time you face any such drug test you can come out with flying colors. That is the best thing regarding knowing about the time of how long does cocaine stay in your system. Check out these: tips to stop cocaine addiction.
Some street names for Cocaine / Crack: Coke, Flake, Snow, Blow, White, Bump, Line, Rail, Snow, Stash, YeyoToot, Base, Basa, Powder, Smack, Big Rush, Pearl, Candy, Cola, C, Big flakes, Nose candy, Baseball, Snow coke, Rocks, Black rock, Chemical, Candy, Nuggets, Gravel, Scrabble, Yam, Sleet, Tornado, Grit, Hail, Hard rock, Jelly beans, Cookies, Dice, Purple caps
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Cocaine: Metabolic Disposition – Yale Journal of Biology and Medicine – 1988 – by P. Jatlow

Sex differences in plasma cocaine levels and subjective effects after acute cocaine administration in human volunteers. – Psychopharmacology Journal – 1996 – by S. E. Lukas, M. Sholar, L. H. Lundahl, X. Lamas, E. Kouri, J. D. Wines, L. Kragie, J. H. Mendelson