Demerol How Long Does It Stay in Your System?

Demerol is a prescription pain-reliever taken to alleviate moderate to severe breakthrough pain. This medication should only be taken when sudden pain occurs or along with surgical procedures.

Common side effects associated with Demerol which do not typically require medical attention are nausea, vomiting, constipation, sweating, lightheadedness, dizziness, drowsiness, and pain or redness at the injection siteMake sure to notify your doctor if any of these common side effects persist or worsen over time.

Some patients do experience serious side effects after taking Demerol, although it is relatively uncommon. Serious Demerol side effects include mood changes, agitation, confusion, hallucinations, stomach or abdominal pain, difficulty urinating, slow or irregular heartbeat, tremors, vision changes, loss of appetite, unusual tiredness, and weight loss. Tell your doctor right away if any of these become noticeable after taking Demerol.

You should seek medical attention immediately if you notice the following severe side effects after taking Demerol: fainting, seizures, slow or shallow breathing, severe drowsiness, difficulty waking from sleep, and symptoms of an allergic reaction such as rash, itching or swelling, severe dizziness, and trouble breathing.

Demerol stays in patients’ systems for a relatively short time due to its short half-life. Usually, it will be completely removed from the body between 6 and 24 hours. It should be noted that these time frames will vary among patients.

In the United States, certain groups of people take opioid pain-relievers more than others. Below are helpful statistics about opioid patient demographics according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention:

  • American adults 40 years and up are more likely to take prescription opioids than those between the ages of 20 and 39.
  • Women are more likely to take prescription opioids than their male counterparts.
  • Non-Hispanic white Americans have the highest rate of opioid intake when compared to other races.

Demerol is a medication that should only be taken according to a medical prescription. This medication is not meant for casual or over the counter use. Taking Demerol without a prescription or giving Demerol to someone without a prescription is against the law.

Drugs containing Demerol which are commonly misused include Demerol itself as well as its generic forms; pethidine and meperidine. Because Demerol is an opioid, it can be extremely addictive. For this reason, you should never take Demerol unless your doctor prescribes it to you.

Demerol is classified as an opioid analgesic. This means the medication effectively relieves pain by changing the way the brain responds to it. By changing this process in the brain, the brain then sends messages to the body which alter how the body experiences pain.

The half-life of Demerol is anywhere from two to five hours; however, the properties in the medication may degrade faster or slower due to each patient’s unique physiology. There are many factors that can influence the speed at which Demerol is eliminated in the body.

There are a wide variety of factors which influence the length of time Demerol remains in a patient’s system. These factors include your age, metabolism, diet, other medications, genetics, physical fitness, organ function, intake of vitamins or herbal products, your Demerol dosage levels, and how often you take Demerol.

It is possible to estimate how long Demerol can be found in your urine, hair, and blood:

  • Urine: Typically, Demerol cannot be detected in normal urine tests because it is composed of a synthetic opioid. However, if you are worried about Demerol showing up in a urine test, abstain from taking the medication for one to two days before the test.
  • Hair: Demerol can be found in hair follicles for up to 90 days after the last dose.
  • Blood: Blood samples will contain traces of Demerol if tested within 24 hours.

Medical Disclaimer: The Recovery Village aims to improve the quality of life for people struggling with a substance use or mental health disorder with fact-based content about the nature of behavioral health conditions, treatment options and their related outcomes. We publish material that is researched, cited, edited and reviewed by licensed medical professionals. The information we provide is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. It should not be used in place of the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare provider.