What is Dilaudid?
Dilaudid is the brand name for the opioid pain killer, hydromorphone hydrochloride. The drug is used to treat severe pain and comes in oral tablet or liquid injection form.
The substance is classified as a schedule II opioid by the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), meaning it has a high potential for addiction and overdose. Opioid pain medications are commonly abused prescription drugs, due to the euphoric effects they can produce when taken outside of the recommended guidelines.
Opioid pain medications activate opioid receptors throughout the central nervous system to produce their effects. This blocks pain messages from being transferred throughout the spinal cord and brain, producing relief from chronic pain.
Side Effects of Dilaudid
There are a number of dangerous side effects that can come from misusing Dilaudid.
These can include:
- Mood changes
- Muscle or joint pain
- Rash or hives
- Difficulty breathing or swallowing
How Long Do the Effects of Dilaudid Last?
There are different kinds of Dilaudid that last for varying lengths – immediate-release or extended-release. Immediate-release tablets start to take effect within thirty minutes, with their peak effectiveness during the first hour. Extended-release tablets start to work within six hours of taking the medication and are most intense after around nine hours.
How Long Does Dilaudid Stay in Your System?
Dilaudid can stay in the body between fifteen hours to three days, with the drug’s half-life being the factor that defines this. A drug’s half-life can be defined as the amount of time it takes for its concentration to be halved in the blood. Half-life values inform how swiftly the body can metabolize a certain drug from the system.
The half-life of immediate-release Dilaudid is between two to three hours, lasting around fifteen hours in the body. For extended-release Dilaudid, its half-life is around eight to fifteen hours and can last up to three days in the system.
Dilaudid Drug Testing
Although Dilaudid can only stay in the system for three days, its metabolites are present for much longer periods of time. Depending on the method of drug testing chosen, these metabolites can be detected for varying amounts of time in the following ways:
A urine drug test is the most commonly used due to it being cost-effective and easy to administer. The detection window for these drug tests is around three days after the last dose.
Blood drug tests can detect if someone has taken Dilaudid for up to twenty-four hours after the last use. Despite this small detection window, it is useful for detecting the same-day use of opioids or current intoxication status.
Cheap and easy to administer, Saliva drug tests are usually carried out via a cheek swab and have a detection window of forty-eight hours.
A hair drug test can detect the drug for up to three months after the last use, depending on the length of the hair sample. This is useful for detecting long-term Dilaudid abuse.
Factors that Affect Detection Times
Other than the test chosen, there is a range of factors that impact Dilaudid metabolism and, therefore, its detection window. These include:
- Frequency of use
- Using other drugs or medications
- Body composition
- Urine PH
- Liver health
If you are looking for the answer to questions such as “How long does Dilaudid stay in the system?” or “How to pass a Dilaudid drug test?” then you may have formed an addiction to the substance. People may develop a Dilaudid addiction after misusing a prescription for chronic pain or experimenting with the drug recreationally.
Addiction – or substance use disorder – is defined by the compulsive urge to take a substance despite its negative impact on a person’s overall well-being. An addiction to Dilaudid and other drugs can influence all parts of an individual’s life – from their mental and physical health, career, relationships, and finances. The mental health disorder is extremely powerful and takes over the decision-making and reward centers of the brain.
People who are addicted to Dilaudid are likely to also have developed a mental and physical dependence. This is where the body adjusts to the substance being in the body and needs it to function at a balanced level. A person who is dependent on Dilaudid will experience withdrawal symptoms when their usual dosage is not met.
Withdrawal symptoms can include:
- Severe sweating
- Muscle and joint pain
- Loss of appetite
- Fast heartbeat
It is possible to experience a fatal Dilaudid overdose when too much of the substance is consumed at once. When mixed with other drugs, such as benzodiazepines or alcohol, the chance of an overdose is increased further.
Dilaudid is a central nervous system depressant that slows down the functioning of bodily systems. An opioid overdose is also termed respiratory depression for this reason. Here, the lungs fail to exchange sufficient oxygen and carbon dioxide due to slowed breathing, heart rate, and blood pressure.
If you suspect someone you are with is experiencing an overdose, contact the emergency services immediately. Signs to look out for include:
- Difficulty concentrating
- Dilated pupils
- Cold, clammy skin
- Blue skin, fingernails, or lips
- Limp or weak muscles
- Difficulty breathing
- Slow or stopped heartbeat
- Extreme sedation
- Loss of consciousness or coma
Dilaudid Addiction Treatment
The first step in overcoming a Dilaudid addiction is to undergo a medical detox. The aim of a detox is to cleanse the body of the drug as safely and comfortably as possible. To do this, medical professionals offer around-the-clock care in a clinical setting. To help deal with withdrawal symptoms, medication may be prescribed, and psychological treatment can be offered.
Rehabilitation Treatment Program
Completing a medical detox is only the initial step in the life-long journey of overcoming an addiction. Once stabilized, addiction treatment continues via an inpatient program.
This provides the chance to overcome an addiction in a tranquil setting where recovery from substance abuse can be the inpatient’s sole focus. A rehabilitation center provides the opportunity for routine and healthy habits to be built.
As addiction is a complex disease that impacts both the mind and body, it is important for inpatients also to undergo psychotherapy. Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is the most commonly used treatment approach, but many more can also be used for drug misuse. These techniques help identify the root cause of addiction, recognize triggers, and build new coping mechanisms to overcome them.
Addiction is an extremely challenging disorder to overcome, though with the right support, it is more than possible. Cirque Lodge is a luxury treatment facility in Utah that is situated in the beautiful Rocky Mountains. Our treatment center is one of the most trusted in the country as we provide top-quality around-the-clock care for our inpatients at every stage of recovery.
Our team of medical professionals approaches each individual with discretion, empathy, and respect. This allows us to create a calm and supportive environment for our inpatients during this difficult time.
As addiction impacts many factors of well-being, taking a holistic approach to healing is vital for long-term recovery. Whether it be substance abuse treatment for Dilaudid or other opioid pain medications, our services are highly flexible and can be individualized to suit each person’s needs.
To find out more about our treatment programs and recovery model, please contact Cirque Lodge today to find out more.