How Long Does Morphine Stay In Your System?

Kimberly Langdon, M.D.

Medically Reviewed By: Kimberly Langdon, M.D.

on December 9, 2022

Morphine can stay in your system for an average of 10 hours after the last dose. Elimination times may vary depending on the dose of morphine taken, the patient’s body fat, and their frequency of use.

Drug testing methods can detect morphine use for an average of 3 days after last use. A positive test result for morphine may be indicative of other forms of opioid use, such as codeine or heroin.

Morphine has seen medical use as a chronic pain, severe pain, and postoperative analgesic for many years. The drug also has a long history of drug abuse due to its sedative effects, and is a Schedule II controlled substance in the United States.

Drug Testing & Detection Times For Morphine Use

Morphine does not have main metabolites, as it does not need to be broken down by the body to achieve its intended effects. Drug testing may only test for morphine as an indicator of the recent use of morphine. Morphine can also be a metabolite of codeine.

Patients may be advised to avoid eating poppy seeds before a drug test. Morphine is derived from the opium poppy plant, and edible versions of poppy seeds can still contain trace amounts of opiates. This can lead to a false positive test for morphine, even if you have not engaged in drug use recently.

How Long Does Morphine Stay In Your Urine?

Urine tests can detect morphine use for up to 3 days after the last dose.

Urine tests can be a common testing method due to the convenient process of obtaining and analyzing a urine sample.

How Long Does Morphine Stay In Your Blood?

Blood tests can detect morphine use for 1 to 3 days after the last dose.

Blood tests may be less common than urine or saliva tests, due to their invasive nature and difficult testing process. They may be restricted to hospital settings.

How Long Does Morphine Stay In Your Saliva?

Oral fluid and saliva tests can detect morphine for about 1 day after the last dose.

Saliva tests can be less invasive than blood or urine tests. However, patients may be required to avoid eating or drinking before the test to avoid inconclusive results.

How Long Does Morphine Stay In Your Hair?

Hair follicles can retain morphine for up to 90 days after the last dose. Morphine can travel to hair follicles through the bloodstream and remain there as the hair grows.

Half-Life Of Morphine

Half-life is the amount of time it takes for a dose of morphine to reduce to half of its peak concentration. Half-life can be used to estimate the elimination time of a drug. After five half-life cycles, most drugs are virtually eliminated from the body.

The average half-life of morphine is around 2 hours, though studies have reported half-lives of 1.5 to 4 hours in some cases. The average elimination time of morphine can be around 10 hours, with potential times varying between 7.5 to 20 hours.

Morphine has a relatively short half-life compared to other opioids, such as oxycodone, hydromorphone, and fentanyl. The side effects of morphine, such as sedation and drowsiness, may also last for a shorter period of time.

Morphine Addiction Treatment Options

If you test positive on an opioid drug test, you may be struggling with a substance use disorder. 

Your doctor may recommend a morphine abuse treatment program, which can reduce patterns of morphine abuse, reduce your risk of morphine overdose, and help you learn about alternative options for pain relief.

Professional treatment programs can offer medical detox programs, medications such as methadone, management of morphine withdrawal symptoms, and mental health services to maximize your chances of a successful recovery.

To learn if our inpatient opioid addiction treatment program works for you or your loved one, please contact us today.

  1. Food and Drug Administration — (morphine sulfate extended-release) Capsules KADIAN® CII Revised
  2. Mayo Clinic Laboratories — Opiates
  3. National Library of Medicine: StatPearls — Morphine

Written by Ohio Recovery Center Editorial Team

© 2024 Ohio Recovery Center | All Rights Reserved

* This page does not provide medical advice.

Prefer Texting?
We've got you covered.

Receive 24/7 text support right away.
There is no obligation and you can opt out at any time.

Sign up for text support

Receive 24/7 text support right away.
There is no obligation and you can opt out at any time.
Let us walk you through the treatment process. We're here to help.
For 24/7 Treatment Help:
100% Free & Confidential. Call (419) 904-4158