Long Does Cocaine Stay in Your System?
When a person asks how long does cocaine stay in your system,
they are asking a somewhat different question than how long does
Coke stay in your body. Let me explain why.
Cocaine in the Human Body
When a person usually asks how long cocaine stays in your system
they are most likely thinking of the short term prospect of how
long cocaine can be detected in one's blood or urine.
What a person typically asks how long cocaine is in your body
this is more of a long-term question such as how long cocaine
can be detected in your hair follicles. Of course, many people,
especially addicts wonder how long Coke stays at the cellular
level in the nervous system and one's brain.
In the short term, cocaine can be detected in one's body through
blood or urine tests from 1 - 5 days with the average testing
equipment. But cocaine produces benzoylecgonine in the body and
this can be detected by short-term blood and urine tests for up
to 22 days.
The duration of short-term testing depends upon the amount cocaine
consumed, the frequency, body weight, male or female, age, rate
of metabolism, whether it was huffed, puffed, snorted, ingested
or injected. Other medicines you may be taking also may bind with
the cocaine and have an effect of how long this keeps in your
Now if you
ask how long is Coke in your body, then this suggests a long-term
worry and a different set of tests that check for this. Cocaine
can stay in the hair follicles typically for 3 to 6 months. But
this only suggests the length of time it can be detected by drug
The Side Effects of Long-Term Use of Cocaine
As many neurologists, clinical psychologists and addicts themselves
will attest, cocaine may stay in the body at the neurological
and cellular level forever. "Once an addict, always an addict"
is a statement often heard in rehab.
Experts say that cocaine changes the brain chemistry and the
chemistry at the neuromuscular level. This means that even though
cocaine may not be detected in the body by common hair follicle
tests it stays in the body forever.
This is why cocaine addicts can go on the wagon for years, falloff,
and then fall into a full blown cocaine addiction again rather
than becoming a casual user. Of course there is also new technology
being developed to check how long Coke is contained within the
body and early tests show that coke can be detected for up to
These tests may one day affect employment, insurance, the criminal
justice system and many other areas of life that one cannot yet
comprehend. Most addicts only think about the short-term benefits
of using cocaine and not the long-term consequences. And, then
reality sets in and that lasts a very long time.