HealthDoes Kratom Show Up On Drug Test?

Does Kratom Show Up On Drug Test?

As the popularity of Kratom continues to soar many are left questioning: Does Kratom show up on a drug test? As an organic substance derived from a Southeast Asian tree, Kratom offers various therapeutic benefits. However, its legal status and the intricacies surrounding its detection in drug screenings can be quite a maze to navigate. This article aims to demystify this topic providing you with reliable information that helps you understand the relationship between Kratom and drug tests more clearly.

Did you know that the type of drug test conducted can greatly impact the detection of substances like Kratom? The complexity lies in the unique nature of Kratom’s active compounds. These subtleties can mean the difference between a positive and a negative result. Stick around to discover how different drug tests respond to Kratom and what this could mean for you in practical terms. The insights might just surprise you!

What Is Kratom and Origin of Kratom

Kratom, scientifically known as Mitragyna speciosa is a tropical tree native to Southeast Asia. Predominantly found in countries like Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, and Papua New Guinea, Kratom has been used in traditional medicine since the 19th century. The leaves of the Kratom tree contain compounds that can have psychotropic (mind-altering) effects. These leaves are often processed into pills, capsules, or extracts or used to brew tea.

Understanding The Drug Tests

Different types of drug tests

There are various types of drug tests utilized today each with its strengths and limitations and selected based on the situation at hand. Some common drug tests include:

  • Urine Tests: These are the most common types of drug tests due to their ease, non-invasiveness and affordability. They can detect drug use over the last few days to a week.
  • Blood Tests: These tests provide the most accurate results and can identify the actual presence and amount of a specific drug in the system. However, they are more invasive and expensive thus less frequently used.
  • Saliva Tests: These tests are quick and non-invasive, often used to detect recent drug use within the past few hours or up to a couple of days.
  • Hair Tests: Hair tests can detect drug use over a longer period of time, typically around 90 days. However, they cannot detect recent drug use within the last few days.

Standard drug tests typically screen for a specific set of commonly abused substances. These often include:

  • Cannabinoids (marijuana, hash)
  • Cocaine (cocaine, crack, benzoylecgonine)
  • Amphetamines (amphetamines, methamphetamines, speed)
  • Opiates (heroin, opium, codeine, morphine)
  • Phencyclidine (PCP)

Some more comprehensive tests can also detect substances like barbiturates, benzodiazepines, methadone and other synthetic drugs.

The science behind drug tests and how they work

Most drug tests particularly urine and blood tests function based on the principle of immunoassays. These tests use antibodies that bind to specific drugs or their metabolites — the substances formed when the body processes the drug. When the drug or metabolite is present in the sample it will bind to the antibody triggering a reaction that produces a visual signal such as a colored line.

The amount of drug or metabolite present in the sample can affect the intensity of this signal thereby giving an indication of how much of the substance is present. However, these tests are typically qualitative rather than quantitative providing a positive or negative result rather than a specific amount of drug present.

In some cases, if a test is positive a second confirmatory test like gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS) might be used. This second test can more accurately identify the specific substance and its concentration.

How Long Does Kratom Stay In Your System?

Kratom a tropical tree native to Southeast Asia, has a half-life of approximately 23-24 hours. This suggests that the body can clear approximately 50% of kratom from its system within a day. Typically, it takes about 5.33 times the half-life of a substance for it to be fully eliminated. Thus, for kratom, it might take around 5 to 6 days for the substance to leave the body entirely.

However, various factors influence this timeline, including age, body fat, genetics, metabolic rate and hydration level. For instance, a younger, more active person with a faster metabolism might process kratom quicker than an older individual with a slower metabolic rate.

Furthermore, individuals who consume kratom regularly may have it in their system for a longer duration due to accumulation. As such the specific duration can vary from person to person. Regular exercise, a healthy diet and proper hydration can aid the body in expediting the removal of such substances.

Moreover, the importance of drug detox cannot be overstated, so, it plays a crucial role in helping individuals to start on the path to recovery. Also, it can clear your system before drug testing. Nowadays, there are various specialized detox programs tailored to specific substances, such as opiate detox or THC detox for cannabis users, making it easier for individuals to receive targeted and effective treatment options.

Kratom and Drug Testing

whether standard drug tests can detect Kratom

Standard drug tests such as a 5-panel or 10-panel drug test, typically screen for common substances like marijuana, cocaine, opioids, amphetamines and PCP, among others. Kratom, known scientifically as Mitragyna speciosa, is not usually included in these tests as it’s a substance that’s chemically distinct from many of the drugs these tests are designed to detect.

Kratom contains alkaloids – primarily mitragynine and 7-hydroxy mitragynine – that affect the human brain in a manner somewhat similar to opioids. However, they don’t show up on many standard drug tests because their molecular structures are different from those of traditional opioids like morphine, heroin or fentanyl.

That being said, specialized drug tests can be conducted to detect kratom specifically. These tests which include urine tests, blood tests or hair follicle tests can identify the presence of mitragynine and 7-hydroxy mitragynine. However, these tests are not common due to the relative rarity of kratom use and the cost associated with these specialized tests.

Factors influencing the detection of Kratom

The detection of kratom in a person’s system can be influenced by several factors:

  • Dosage: The amount of kratom consumed can influence how long it remains in the system. Larger doses may be detectable for longer periods.
  • Frequency of Use: Frequent use of kratom may lead to longer detection times as the substance could accumulate in the body.
  • Metabolism: Individual metabolic rates can affect how quickly kratom is processed and excreted.
  • Age: Older individuals often have slower metabolic rates which may extend the length of time that kratom is detectable.
  • Health & Lifestyle: General health, diet, hydration and physical activity can also impact how quickly kratom is metabolized.

Case studies and personal experiences (if any)

There is a relative scarcity of published case studies focusing on kratom detection in drug tests. Additionally, privacy and confidentiality rules limit the amount of detailed personal experiences available.

However, anecdotal evidence often found in online communities indicates that many individuals have passed standard drug tests after consuming kratom, reinforcing the point that typical panels do not test for this substance. But remember, specialized tests can detect kratom if they’re specifically looking for it.

It is essential to note that while kratom may not be detected in a standard drug test, its use is not without risks. It is known to produce side effects like nausea, itching, dry mouth, and increased urination. More serious concerns include dependency and withdrawal symptoms. In several countries and states within the US, kratom is considered a controlled substance and is illegal to use. Therefore, it is always recommended to approach this substance with caution and informed understanding.

Common uses and effects of Kratom

Traditionally, Kratom leaves were chewed or brewed into tea and used to combat fatigue, improve mood and relieve pain. Today, it is consumed for similar reasons with some users reporting that Kratom helps to alleviate symptoms of anxiety, depression and post-traumatic stress disorder. It’s also been used to mitigate withdrawal symptoms in individuals trying to quit opioids.

In terms of its effects, Kratom acts on the opioid receptors in the brain, leading to effects ranging from stimulant-like at low doses to sedative at higher doses. Users may experience increased energy, alertness and sociability or alternatively, drowsiness, euphoria and pain relief.

Risks and potential side effects of Kratom Usage

While Kratom may have therapeutic effects for some, it also carries potential risks and side effects. In the short term, users may experience nausea, itching, sweating, dry mouth, constipation, increased urination and loss of appetite. More concerning are the potential long-term effects, which can include weight loss, insomnia, skin darkening, dependency, and withdrawal symptoms much like opioids.

Further, some serious adverse events have been reported, like seizures, liver damage and even death, usually when Kratom is used with other drugs or substances. It’s also important to note that the production of Kratom is not regulated, leading to potential variability in quality and contamination risks. Lastly, due to its psychoactive properties, Kratom use can lead to psychological addiction with users craving its effects.

Kratom-Specific Drug Tests

Explanation of specialized tests designed to detect Kratom

As mentioned before kratom-specific drug tests are designed to detect the unique alkaloids found in this substance, particularly mitragynine and 7-hydroxy mitragynine. These tests are more specialized than standard drug tests and are not as commonly administered.

There are several types of tests that can be used to detect kratom:

  • Urine Test: As with many substances, mitragynine can be detected in urine. This is one of the most common methods for detecting kratom due to its convenience and non-invasive nature.
  • Blood Test: Blood tests can also be used to detect kratom. They might be more accurate in showing the exact amount of the substance in the body but are more invasive than urine tests.
  • Hair Follicle Test: Though less common, a hair follicle test could potentially detect kratom use over a more extended period. The use of this test for kratom detection is still relatively rare and may not be as reliable as urine or blood tests.

The circumstances where these tests might be used

Kratom-specific tests might be administered under specific circumstances, such as:

  • Legal or Forensic Settings: If kratom is illegal in a specific jurisdiction and someone is suspected of its use, a kratom-specific test may be administered.
  • Medical Purposes: If a patient presents symptoms consistent with kratom use or overdose, healthcare providers might order a kratom-specific test.
  • Workplace Testing: Some employers who are aware of kratom and its potential effects might include it in their drug testing protocol, particularly in safety-sensitive industries.
  • Rehabilitation Settings: If a person is in a drug recovery program they might be tested for a wide range of substances, including kratom.

Accuracy and reliability of Kratom-specific tests

The accuracy and reliability of kratom-specific tests can depend on various factors including the type of test the timing of the test relative to kratom ingestion and the laboratory conducting the test.

Urine and blood tests for kratom are generally accurate and reliable for detecting recent use. However, false positives or false negatives can occur. This can be due to the lab methods used, cross-reactivity with other substances or the use of certain medications or supplements.

Hair tests for kratom may not be as reliable or widely accepted due to less research and standardization in this area. Regardless of the method used it’s critical to have these tests performed by a certified laboratory to ensure accuracy.

Legal Implications and Workplace Policies

A brief overview of laws and regulations surrounding Kratom

The legality of kratom is somewhat complex and varies greatly across different countries and even within states or provinces in the same country.

In the United States, the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) has not federally classified kratom as a controlled substance but it has been listed as a “drug of concern.” This means that at the federal level, there is no prohibition against using or distributing kratom. However, several states have independently classified kratom as a controlled substance, making it illegal to use, possess, or distribute.

In contrast, countries such as Australia, Thailand (although they recently considered changing their stance) and Denmark have made kratom use illegal. The legal status in other countries varies and it’s best to check the local regulations for the most accurate information.

How Businesses and employers handle Kratom Use

Employer policies on kratom use largely depend on the jurisdiction, nature of work and specific workplace drug policies. Given the relatively unfamiliar status of kratom compared to substances like marijuana, cocaine, or opioids many employers may not have explicit policies on kratom use.

However, if kratom use is suspected to affect job performance or safety, especially in safety-sensitive industries like transportation, healthcare or construction, employers may adopt a more proactive stance. This could involve updating their drug policies to include kratom, providing education about the substance or implementing kratom-specific drug testing.

Consequences of Positive Kratom test results in the Workplace

The consequences of a positive kratom test result in the workplace will depend on several factors including the employer’s drug policy the nature of the employee’s work and local laws and regulations.

Possible outcomes might include:

  • Disciplinary Action: This could range from a formal warning to suspension or even termination depending on the company’s policy.
  • Mandatory Counseling or Rehabilitation: The employee may be required to attend drug counseling or a rehabilitation program.
  • Job Restructuring: The employee might be moved to a non-safety-sensitive role where their drug use is less likely to pose a risk.
  • Legal Consequences: If kratom is illegal in the jurisdiction where the employee works, a positive test result could potentially have legal consequences.

Also, Read

How To Make Kratom Tea


In conclusion, while kratom isn’t typically detected in a standard drug test, specific tests can identify its usage. This natural remedy, widely used for its therapeutic effects, lies in a grey area of legal and social acceptance. However, it’s crucial for users to be aware of potential implications in certain contexts, like sports or jobs where stringent testing is applied. Always remember, responsible and informed use is key to deriving benefits while mitigating risks. Stay educated, be aware, and ensure your actions align with your unique circumstances and regulations.

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