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Can You Use Narcan (Naloxone) To Beat A Drug Test?

May 2013---Can You Use Narcan (Naloxone) To Beat A Drug Test?

This question was posed to me the other day and I thought it was one of the most thought provoking questions relating to drugs I have heard in a while.

Before you can truly understand what this question means, you must understand two things.

What is narcan?

Put simply, narcan is the antidote for an opiate overdose. Opiate overdose deaths occur because the persons respiratory system goes into failure and they stop breathing. Narcan is carried on nearly every rescue squad and stocked in virtually every hospital. It comes in a liquid form that can be administered by injection into a vein, into a muscle or under the skin. It also comes in the form of a nasal mist. This drug has saved countless lives that would have otherwise been lost due to the respiratory failure that comes along with opiate overdose. Once administered, if administered in time, the overdose victim usually comes out of respiratory failure and comes "back to life". Narcan can actually cause an opiate addict to go into immediate opiate withdrawal (which can be life threatening all on it's own). The key here is that narcan appears, to the casual observer, to destroy all the opiates in a persons body. It appears to "get rid" of the opiates nearly immediately.

What are opiates?

Opiates come in many forms and are generally used to treat pain. Some of the most common examples would be heroin, morphine, methadone, vicodin, oxycontin, opana, demerol, fentanyl, dilaudid, percocet....and the list goes on. 

So here is the thought process. I am addicted to an opiate and I just received notification that I must take a drug screen tomorrow. If I could get my hands on some narcan I could inject it, destroy all the opiates in my body and thereby pass the drug screen. I know that doing this will cause me to go into opiate withdrawal, will make me violently ill because of that immediate withdrawal, could be fatal..... but if it permits me to pass the drug screen.....it just may be worth it.

This sounds like a logical conclusion, other than it is completely wrong.

Narcan will "push" the opiates off the opioid receptors in your brain, and generally allow your respiratory functions to return to normal during an overdose, but it will not eliminate the opiates from the tissues and cells within your body. This method will not work and you will still fail the drug screen. As a matter of fact, using narcan in this fashion could be fatal because it could send you into immediate, severe opiate withdrawal.

In closing, narcan is a potent drug for preventing death due to an opiate induced overdose, but it is not possible to utilize narcan to pass a drug screen.

For other blog posts that will help you expand this particular field of knowledge please click here or here.

To understand why heroin is so popular now click here.

Chief Kyle J. Fittro

If you are seeing this page as a single blog post, and would like to read more posts about drugs on the chiefteach website, simply click the blog tab at the top right of this page.


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