Cocaine Facts


Cocaine normally stays in the system for approximately 48 hours. Although the method of administration and the dose administered affects how long it takes for the body to metabolize this drug. When coca leaves are chewed, absorption time is around 30 minutes. If the drug is snorted, the peak effects are likely to manifest within the next 20 minutes and are maintained for roughly an hour. Injecting the drug directly to the bloodstream allows the user to feel the full effects within 3.2 minutes. This route is considered to be the one with greatest health threat. Cocaine is estimated to be in the system for around 72 hours since its initial intake.

However cocaine drug tests are designed to detect the metabolite of cocaine, benzylecgonine.  When cocaine is metabolized in the body it undergoes hydrolysis.  The process of hydrolysis leaves a by-product known as benzoylecgonine.  It is that metabolite which is the decisive component that indicates the use of cocaine. This metabolite remains in the system for at least a month following intake.

How Long Does Cocaine Stay In Your Urine?

The length of time cocaine stays in the Urine depends on several factors like:

  • the potency of the drug
  • the amount taken in
  • the frequency of drug use
  • the general health of the user
  • the age of the user
  • the gender of the user
  • the user’s drug tolerance 
  • the user’s metabolic rate.

If a single nasal cocaine dose is snorted, it can be detected inside 4 to 10 hours and around 24 hours subsequent to a single oral dose. Injected cocaine can be detected in the urine even 20 hours or more from use.  The cocaine metabolites (benzoylecgonine, ecgonine methyl ester and coca ethylene) are detected until 60 hours from last single use or 22 days after continual use.

If the test result shows a benzoylecgonine to cocaine ratio that is below 100:1, it indicates positive cocaine use within ten hours or less before the urine sample was collected and tested. The accurate dose and exact time of use are not determined by this test procedure.

How Long Does Cocaine Stay In Your Blood?

A single dose of cocaine can be detected in the blood as soon as even after a few minutes from intake to around five to 6 hours later.  Benzoylecgonine has a half-life of around 6 to 7 hours. This would mean that this cocaine metabolite is still present in the urine after about 72 hours. But keep in mind the length of detection time is affected by many factors.

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