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How long does OxyContin stay in your system?

How long does OxyContin stay in your system?

OxyContin is a sustained, controlled-release formulation of oxycodone. OxyContin is designed to provide delivery of oxycodone over 12 hours (OxyContin vs oxycodone) and can be detected in urine 1-3 days after you take it.  Do the extended release formula affect its elimination time? And how are drug tests designed to detect OxyContin in the body? More on the peak levels, half life, and detection times for OxyContin below.

How do you take OxyContin?

OxyContin is prescribed in doses of 10-80 mg daily, and is to be taken orally as a tablet. People who abuse OxyContin cut, break, chew, crush, or dissolve OxyContin. But this type of use leads to rapid immediate release of oxycodone in the body and can lead to overdose or death.

What is OxyContin used for?

OxyContin is used in the management of moderate to severe CHRONIC pain. OxyContin provides continuous, around-the-clock pain relief and can be used for an extended period of time. However, OxyContin is NOT USED on an as needed basis or immediately following surgery.

Peak levels and half life of OxyContin

The effects of OxyContin start one hour after administration and last for 12 hours in the controlled release formula. Peak plasma concentrations of OxyContin vary by dosage, but are reached between 4-5.5 hours after taking the medicine. Stable plasma levels are reached within 24 hours. The half life of OxyContin (extended release oxycodone) is 4.5 hours compared to 3.2 hours for immediate release oxycodone.

OxyContin drug testing

Typically, drug screens for OxyContin are urine based. And initial screening drug test uses an immunoassay method to identify the presence of oxycodone. Then, a second confirmatory test is required unless a positive result has been expected or drug use is disclosed. Confirmatory drug tests use gas chromatography/mass spectrometry or liquid chromatography/tandem mass spectrometry (GC/MS or LC/MS/MS) to verify a presumptive positive result. The recommended cutoff level for oxycodone is 100 ng/mL, below the standard opioid assay cutoff level of 300 ng/ml.

How long does OxyContin stay in the body?

The oxycodone contained in OxyContin can be detected in urine for 1-3 days. Oxycodone is metabolized to oxymorphone, so these may both be present in the urine of oxycodone users.

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OxyContin and addiction

The main ingredient in OxyContin, oxycodone, is an opioid agonist and a Schedule II controlled substance with a relatively high abuse liability. The most recent formulation of OxyContin was designed for use in moderate to severe pain of prolonged duration. Physical dependence and tolerance are expected in people who take OxyContin for long term pain. But when does dependence become addiction?  And are addiction OxyContin statistics higher than other prescription drugs?

The potency of OxyContin is about equal to morphine. People who take OxyContin to get high, for the euphoric effects, are most likely to become addicted to OxyContin. Anyone who takes OxyContin in ways other that prescribed (cut, broken, chewed, crushed, or dissolved) or without a prescription is at risk of becoming addicted to the drug.

Problems with OxyContin?

If you think that you have problems with OxyContin, you probably do. Help is available and treating OxyContin addiction may be one of the most important decisions of your life. Please leave us your questions, comments or experience with OxyContin below. We are happy to respond to all queries with a personal reply.

Reference sources: PubChem oxycodone substance summary
NCJRS Abstract on Street Drugs: A Drug Identification Guide
Interagency Guideline on Opioid Dosing for Chronic Non-cancer Pain (CNCP)
Daily Med drug info on OxyContin tablets
Comparison of an automated and point-of-care immunoassay to GC-MS for urine oxycodone testing in the clinical laboratory



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16 Responses to “How long does OxyContin stay in your system?
scotty smith
2:12 pm October 28th, 2012

i been on oxycontin 40 mg and oxycodone 10 mg now for 4 years. i have cancer and constantly in severe pain. im scared if and when i do get better if ill be haveing those auful withdraws . and if so what can i do about it. right now if i dont take it i end up back in the er. i no at times i shake really bad. well ty

2:05 pm October 30th, 2012

Hello scotty. We wish you a full and healthy body – one that is cancer and pain free! When the time comes to get off OxyContin and oxycodone, you can work out a tapering schedule with your prescribing doctor. Tapering dosages over the course of 4-6 weeks is an effective way of decreasing the intensity and severity of withdrawal symptoms. Additionally, you can ask for more information about medications like clonidine which target specific withdrawal symptoms. Lastly, there are over-the-counter and home remedies like NSAIDs, warm bath/shower and hot pads which can help ease discomfort caused by withdrawal. In the end, withdrawal is an uncomfortable phase…but one that will pass.

Does this help?

10:22 pm November 16th, 2012

Hello Scotty… I have been addicted to Oxycodone, Oxycontin, Heroin and Methadone and have had to come off of all of them at one time or another. I recently kicked methadone after a 4 month taper process from 80ml/day to 6ml/day and had horrible withdrawl symptoms. But I had found that the more i focused and worried about the withdrawl, the worse it was to go through.

Basically, dont worry about it. Concentrate on staying healthy and beating the cancer. You will be in such a great state of mind when you beat it, that a tapered withdrawl will be nothing at all to handle.

Good Wishes,

10:44 am June 24th, 2013

Scotty Smith, when the time comes look into some herbal alternatives. The Kratom Tree indigenous to south east Asia, is the best thing for opiate withdraws. Only nature can truly be your solution to the torture that nature has bestowed upon the dependence to opiates. Any man made or engineered derivatives will poison your body and mind further. So good health and god-speed.

5:45 am February 1st, 2014

hi, i took an oxy op 30 on friday night and am getting drug tested on wednesday night, will it still be in my system?

6:02 pm February 6th, 2014

Should be fine. Wrong post to hijack though.

5:34 am November 13th, 2014

how long doaes oxy stay in your system ive been takin like 60mg a day for a month n I have a drug screen n 5 days will I b alright I really need this job

3:59 pm November 17th, 2014

Hi Chris. As stated in the article above, OxyContin can be detected in urine for 1-3 days after the last dose was taken. Best of luck with the job!

shane h
10:17 pm February 21st, 2015

I took 5 oxy 20 on Saturday i have taken any i a mounth or 2and got to take drug test Tuesday morning pee and mouth swab will I pass

12:43 pm March 9th, 2015

How long does it stay in your system if you were properly prescribed by dr. And it’s been 2 years???? Because I’m detoxing & wanna be done with this evil drug, it’s day 4!

6:49 am September 18th, 2015

this is for anyone asking how long it takes oxycodone to leave your body for a urine test. its been answered already just read. 24-72 hours. done. again, 24-72 hours, 1-3 days, 24-72 hours,
1440-4320 minutes, 24-72 hours, 1-3 days, 1440-4320 minutes, 86400-259200 seconds. one more time… 24-72 hours. it’s everywhere… and here I even created a formula for u.

d x 200 x 2^-(n/h)

where d = the dose in milligrams you took, n = hours since your last dose, and h = the biological half-life of said substance. since there is a range with half-life do the math with the minimum and the maximum half-life to give you your range. if you use everyday double the dose to be safe. if you use twice a day triple the dose. if you use three or more times a day quadruple the dose to be safe. your answer is in nanograms per milliliter. even if you do 10 30’s at a time 3 times a day your last dose would be 300mg. quadrupled is 1200mg and when plugged in with a maximum half-life of 5 hours, after 60 hours your level is 58.6 n/ml which passes most of the time.

4:56 am November 9th, 2015

I have taken OxyContin a few times 5 – 6 days ago, and I have taken a home test to prescreen myself for an upcoming job which requires a drug test.

The results show basically negative but the line is very faint.

I have been drinking plenty of water and detoxing with organic green juice. Why does the test kit still faintly look positive for OXY?

1:47 am November 18th, 2015

Just wanted to know how long it will it take my body to feel better again since I went off 120mg I feel so tried and want to sleep alot just need an answer please

7:12 pm November 18th, 2015

Hello Ida. Everything depends on how the drug affects your body. It needs time for your body to adapt the new environment, the environment without OxyContin. Be patient in your recovery, and if you can’t used to it, talk with a doctor to plan you a tapering schedule.

2:14 am December 1st, 2015

I took half of one around 1130 this morning and I have a doc appt tomorrow at 430, do you think it’ll be out by then

11:05 am December 1st, 2015

Hello Ashlee. Well, experts claim that OxyContin can be detected in the urine 1-3 days after its use. However, it all depends on the drug dosage, time of use, frequency, metabolism, etc. I think you should tell your doctor that you took half pill, and the reason why you took it, so s/he will understand.

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