Kratom is an herbal drug that is currently legal in the United States. It comes from the Mitragyna speciosa plant, which is native to tropical parts of the world. Mitragynine is the main active component in kratom and is responsible for the effects the drug has on the body. Mitragynine generates opioid-like activity in the brain and it can reduce the sensation of pain like an opioid does. Kratom addiction can develop over time through regular use. In low doses, kratom can have stimulant effects.
How long kratom stays in a person’s body depends on many factors, including:
- Kratom dose size
- Frequency of kratom use
- Type of kratom used and how the leaves were processed
- Route of kratom administration (for example, snorted, ingested or smoked)
- Age, weight and sex of the user
- Body fat percentage (mitragynine is very soluble in fat)
- Genetic metabolism variables
- Overall nutrition and hydration status
How is Kratom Metabolized?
Researchers believe that kratom metabolizes in the liver, forming other metabolites derived from the original kratom compound mitragynine. It also appears that a small amount of mitragynine is eliminated in urine, but this amount is so small that it is safe to say that most metabolism and elimination occurs in the liver.
In a study of patients who abused kratom for an average of 1.75 years, and then were given controlled amounts of kratom tea for seven days, the average kratom half-life was almost 24 hours. This means that after 24 hours of taking a dose of kratom, one-half of that dose remains in the body. For example, if someone took two grams of kratom, after about 24 hours, there would still be one gram of kratom left in their system. After another 24 hours, there would be half of a gram left in the system and so on.
In people who haven’t used kratom long-term, the half-life can be shorter, at around 3.5 hours. One kratom metabolite has a half-life of about 2.5 hours. These differences in half-life measurements show that it can vary from person to person, especially depending on how long the person used kratom.
Kratom and Drug Testing
Many people decide to use kratom, as opposed to other substances, because they believe it won’t show up on drug tests. Kratom testing is not a part of several standard tests, like the SAMHSA-5, but some kratom components and metabolites can be detectable with certain drug tests, such as urine or blood tests.
How Long Does Kratom Stay In Your Saliva?
A saliva test could be used to identify kratom or its metabolites in saliva. While this type of testing is frequently used to test for a variety of drug types, a saliva test for kratom is not available currently.
How Long Does Kratom Stay In Your Blood?
A blood test could be used to determine if someone took kratom, and to calculate how much they could have taken. Kratom is easy to detect in a person’s blood. If someone is a heavy or long-term user of kratom, there would likely be metabolites that could show up in blood tests for several days following use. Since blood tests only provide a short detection window for substances — usually just a few hours or up to a couple days after ingestion — urine tests are more likely to be used.
How Long Does Kratom Stay In Your Urine?
Some kratom alkaloids may show up on certain urine tests. While research that indicates how long kratom would be detectable in a user’s urine is limited, there could be trace amounts detected in a urine test for over a week. For an average kratom user, it probably would be detectable in their urine within a 5-day period after use. Some of the kratom metabolites might be detectable in the urine for over a week.
How Long Does Kratom Stay In Your Hair?
As with many other drugs, testing of hair follicles can show whether someone has used a substance in the past few months. It can detect use over a longer period of time than some of the other methods, usually up to 90 days. Currently, there are not any hair tests being used to test for kratom. It’s not known if the chemicals contained in kratom would be detectable in hair, so more research is being done in that area.
If you know someone who is struggling with kratom addiction, contact The Recovery Village Columbus today. Speak with a representative to learn how The Recovery Village Columbus can provide you or a loved one with the help you need to achieve a healthier life. Call today and take the first step toward a healthier future.
National Institute on Drug Abuse. “Kratom.” National Institute on Drug Abuse, April 2019. Accessed May 5, 2019.
Trakulsrichai, Stariya. “Pharmacokinetics of Mitragynine in Man.” April 29, 2015. Accessed May 5, 2019.
Confirm Biosciences. “Kratom.” Accessed May 5, 2019.