How Long Hydromorphone Stays in Your System

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How long hydromorphone is detectable in the body depends on several variables, including which kind drug test is being used. Hydromorphone — also known as Dilaudid, Hydrostat, Palladone, Dillies, hospital heroin, hydro — can be detected for a shorter time with some tests, but can be "visible" for up to three months in other tests.

The timetable for detecting hydromorphone in the system is also dependent upon each individual's metabolism, body mass, age, hydration level, physical activity, health conditions and other factors, making it almost impossible to determine an exact time hydromorphone will show up on a drug test.

Other factors that can affect how long hydromorphone can be detected is the length of time someone has been taking the medication, how frequently, and the strength of the dosage.

The following is an estimated range of times, or detection windows, during which hydromorphone can be detected by various testing methods.


Hydromorphone can be detected in the urine for 3-4 days


A blood test can detect Hydromorphone for up to 24 hours.


A saliva test can detect Hydromorphone for up to 1-4 days


Hydromorphone, like many other drugs, can be detected with a hair follicle drug test for up to 90 days.

Avoiding Overdose

Hydromorphone, opiate (narcotic) analgesic, is used to relieve pain. The extended-release form is used to relieve severe pain around the clock. It is, therefore, important to know how long it remains in the body to avoid a possible accidental overdose.

As a form of morphine, too much hydromorphone can cause deep sleep and can slow respiration.

If more of the drug is taken before it is completely metabolized out of the system, an overdose can occur.

Even when taken as directed, hydromorphone can cause serious and life-threatening breathing problems especially during the first 24 to 72 hours after you first begin taking the medication or after an increase in dosage.

Alcohol should never be consumed while taking hydromorphone due to the increased risk of a fatal overdose.

Symptoms of a Hydromorphone Overdose

Some of the symptoms of a Hydromorphone overdose include:

If someone has taken an overdose of Hydromorphone, call 9-1-1 immediately. First-responders should be able to revive the victim with Narcan, but only if they are notified soon enough.


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American Association for Clinical Chemistry "Drugs of Abuse Testing." Lab Tests Online. Revised 2 January 2013.

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OHS Health & Safety Services. "How long do drugs stay in your system?."

National Institue on Drug Abuse. "Hydromorphone." Drugs, Herbs and Supplements August 2014