How long does Lyrica stay in your system?
Lyrica (pregabalin) will stay in your blood (plasma) for about 35 hours, but its clinical effect may wear off before this time. Studies have shown pregabalin to be detectable in urine for up to 5 to 6 days.
Pregabalin, the active ingredient in Lyrica, has a half-life of 6.3 hours. The half-life of a drug is the time it takes for the plasma (blood) concentration of a drug to reduce by one-half (50%) of its original value. It takes about 5 to 5.5 half-lives for a drug to be eliminated from your body. So, after about 32 to 35 hours, most of Lyrica is gone from your body (blood or plasma).
Published research suggests that pregabalin can be detected in the urine for up to 5 to 6 days. Standard workplace urine drug tests do not typically screen for pregabalin (Lyrica), but this drug could be added to the test, or tested for separately, if there was a concern for abuse.
Related: Drug Testing FAQs
Lyrica (pregabalin) is used to treat various nerve-related pain disorders in adults 18 years and older as well as a certain type of epilepsy in patients one month and older. These include fibromyalgia, diabetic neuropathy, shingles pain (postherpetic neuralgia), spinal cord injury, and as an add-on therapy for partial-onset seizures (epilepsy).
Where do I find the half-life of a drug?
The half-life of a drug is usually found in the manufacturer’s product information (also called the package insert) in the Clinical Pharmacology section. Different drugs will have different half-lives, and some drugs may have very short half-lives (in minutes), while other drugs may have very long half-lives (many days). For example, Flolan (epoprostenol) has an half-life of no more than 6 minutes, while Prozac (fluoxetine) has a half-life of 4 to 6 days.
The half-life and elimination of a drug can vary from person-to-person based on their age, weight, genetics, kidney or liver function, drug interactions, and even their medical conditions.
Lyrica is primarily eliminated through the kidneys. If you have reduced kidney function, your doctor may need to lower your dose of Lyrica.
Is Lyrica a controlled substance / narcotic?
Lyrica is a controlled substance but it is not a narcotic (an opioid medication like oxycodone or morphine). It is a C-V (schedule 5) controlled substance, meaning it has a low potential for abuse relative to the drugs in schedule IV, but may still be abused. Lyrica (pregabalin) is in the class of drugs known as anticonvulsants (for seizures), but is used for other conditions that involve nerve pain, too.
Learn more: Controlled Substances Act (CSA) Schedules
If you have a history of drug or alcohol problems, you may be more likely to misuse Lyrica. It can cause some people to feel relaxed, calm, or euphoric (“high”). Some people may abuse Lyrica because of this effect, or use it with alcohol or other recreational drugs, but this can be dangerous. Before you start treatment with Lyrica, be sure to tell your healthcare provider if you have ever abused prescription medicines, street drugs, or alcohol in the past.
Euphoria has been reported in 1% to 12% of patients in clinical studies evaluating Lyrica.
Lyrica may also cause serious side effects if used in combination with narcotics (opioid painkillers such as oxycodone), or medicines for anxiety (such as lorazepam) or insomnia drugs to help you sleep (such as zolpidem).
- Tell your doctor and pharmacist about all of the medicine you take before you start treatment with this medicine.
- You may be at risk for side effects like dizziness, sleepiness or serious breathing problems if certain medicines are taken with Lyrica.
- Taking Lyrica with opioid pain medicines (narcotics) may lead to death.
This is not all the information you need to know about Lyrica (pregabalin) for safe and effective use and does not take the place of talking to your doctor about your treatment. Review the full Lyrica information here, and discuss this information and any questions you have with your doctor or other health care provider.
- FAQs. Lyrica.com. Pfizer. Accessed June 2, 2021 at https://www.lyrica.com/frequently-asked-questions
- Lyrica (pregbablin). Prescribing information. Pfizer, NY, NY. Accessed June 2, 2021 at http://labeling.pfizer.com/showlabeling.aspx?id=561
- Spigset O, Westin AA. Detection times of pregabalin in urine after illicit use: when should a positive specimen be considered a new intake? Ther Drug Monit. 2013 Feb;35(1):137-40. DOI: 10.1097/FTD.0b013e31827789dd
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