Skip to content

How Long Is Percocet Stay In Your System?

    How Long Is Percocet Stay In Your System

    How Long Is Percocet Stay In Your System?

    What Is The Half Life of Percocet? How Long Does It Take to Feel the Effects?  How Long Does Percocet Stay in the System for Drug Test?

    What Is Percocet? 

    Percocet contains a combination of oxycodone and acetaminophen. Oxycodone is an opioid pain medication [1]. An opioid is sometimes called a narcotic. Acetaminophen is a less potent pain reliever that increases the effects of oxycodone. Opioids such as Percocet activate the brain’s reward center. It is considered a psychoactive drug. So a person can develop Percocet addiction due to the euphoric side effects of this prescription medication. A person who does not receive effective care for an addiction to these pain pills can suffer many adverse side effects and consequences.

    Percocet, also known as “White Collar Heroin,” is a controlled substance. It is classified by the US Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) as a Schedule II substance which means it has a high potential for abuse and addiction, but it still has some accepted medical uses [2]. In large dosages, someone who abuses Percocet feels a similar euphoria or “high” as those who abuse heroin, which is why Percocet is so addicting.

    If it’s taken largely for long periods of time, the body and brain can grow dependent on this drug. As a result, when a person stops taking the drug, the body needs time to recover. This causes withdrawal symptoms. Withdrawal from Percocet can happen any time long-term use is stopped or cut back. It can be hard living with Percocet addiction. Coping with such an addiction can be life-consuming. Also, those who are addicted can lose themselves to constantly seeking their drug, “doctor shopping,” and living in fear.

    How Long Is Percocet Stay In Your System
    Percocet addiction should not be taken lightly because of its serious effects.

    What Is The Half Life of Percocet?

    Percocet has an average elimination half-life of 3.5 hours, meaning this is the amount of time it takes for half a dose of Percocet to leave one’s system. This means that it will take an average of 19 hours to eliminate all of the Percocet from the system. However, this can take longer for those who are chronic, heavy users of the drug, as opioids will be absorbed by the body’s fatty tissues if there’s more Percocet in the body than the liver can handle at once. It takes longer for the traces of Percocet in these tissues to leave the body than that which primarily stays in the bodily fluids.

    How Long Does It Take to Feel the Effects? 

    Percocet is mostly known for pain relief but it also makes some people feel relaxed and even sleepy. The pain-relieving effects of Percocet can typically be felt about 20 to 30 minutes after taking the drug.

    Common side effects of Percocet include:

    • Blurred vision
    • Confusion or muddied thinking
    • Constipation
    • Dizziness
    • Drowsiness or sleepiness
    • Headache
    • Itching
    • Nausea
    • Upset stomach
    • Vomiting

    When taken in large doses or misused, Percocet can cause the following side effects:

    • Confusion
    • Depression
    • Flushing or sweating
    • Low blood pressure
    • Mood swings
    • Problems with coordination
    • Slowed breathing
    • Trouble concentrating

    How Long Does Percocet Stay in the System for Drug Test? 

    Although Percocet (oxycodone) can remain in a person’s system for up to 48 hours, one study found the detection window was shorter among people who do not use the drug regularly (about 30 hours). Although Percocet (oxycodone) can remain in a person’s system for up to 48 hours, one study found the detection window was shorter among people who do not use the drug regularly (about 30 hours).

    People who use Percocet may worry about its effects on employer drug tests. They may also wonder how long it will remain in breast milk, as well as how long it takes for withdrawal symptoms to ease as oxycodone exits the body.

    Factors That Influence How Long Percocet Is In Your System

    The length of time Percocet stays in the body depends on several factors, including:

    • The dosage
    • How a person takes it (orally, intravenously, or nasally)
    • The person’s metabolism
    • How many doses do they take before stopping
    • Their body size
    • Their age
    • any other medications the person is taking, as some inhibit the metabolism of Percocet and lead to increased levels in the blood

    The testing method is also important, since Percocet may remain in the urine, hair, and breast milk long after its effects wear off.

    Percocet Drug Test – Blood Test

    Percocet can be detected in the blood for about a day. However, more advanced drug screenings can confirm the metabolites of Percocet (oxycodone), not just the drug itself. This could result in a longer detection time from the test.

    Percocet Urine Test

    By far the most common form of drug screening, Percocet urine tests can confirm the drug in the urine for 48 hours following use. However, basic urine screenings (like immunoassay tests) may miss semi-synthetic opioids like Percocet. More advanced urine screenings (such as gas chromatography or mass spectrometry) are more sensitive and can report semi-synthetic opioid use more accurately.

    Percocet Drug Test – Hair Follicle Test

    As with most drugs, Percocet (Oxycodone) is detectable in the hair for an extended period of time. That said, hair testing is typically used to detect heavy, long-term use patterns, and may not be accurate for testing short-term use.

    False Positive Testing

    If you take a urine drug screen while taking Percocet, it will be positive for opioids, so let the clinic know what you’re taking ahead of time. It’s also always a good idea to disclose any drugs and supplements you are taking to the testing agency, in case they can trigger a false positive.

    how long is Percocet stay in your system
    No matter what, when dealing with addiction problems, the care and supervision of a medical professional are necessary.

    Percocet Withdrawal

    Anyone addicted to Percocet or any other opioid should consult a medical professional before attempting to quit, as withdrawal symptoms can be extremely unpleasant, and cravings can be intense. Addiction treatment centers may gradually wean a client off the medication or substitute an opioid dependence treatment medication to minimize these effects.

    Percocet withdrawal symptoms include:

    • Yawning
    • Watery eyes
    • Runny nose
    • Restlessness
    • Irritability
    • Anxiety and depression
    • Tremors
    • Nausea and vomiting
    • Diarrhea
    • Hypertension
    • Increased heart rate
    • Muscle aches

    Percocet Detox 

    Home detox can be dangerous because of complications that de-stabilize physical and psychiatric conditions quickly and severely. Abrupt discontinuation has caused seizures, convulsions, and coma. Additionally, usual Percocet addiction symptoms are exceedingly uncomfortable and withdrawal is often ‘self-medicated’ by resuming use. Without adequate medical supervision, acute withdrawal symptoms may continue for some days and result in:

    • Malnourishment
    • Severe dehydration
    • Extended hypertensive crisis

    Medical assistance is recommended for Percocet withdrawal due to physical and psychiatric health risks. The most common medical method is a gradual lowering (tapering) of the usual dose as medications ease withdrawal symptoms. This process can last up to 2 weeks, depending upon one’s health, the amount of Percocet used, and how long it was used.

    Mixing Percocet and Alcohol

    The main difference between combining Percocet and alcohol and combining alcohol with other painkillers is the huge possibility of severe liver damage. The FDA has issued a warning to pharmaceutical companies, limiting the amount of acetaminophen to be mixed into opioid painkillers. 

    Acetaminophen ( which is an active ingredient of Percocet) causes more than 400 deaths per year due to its effects on the liver. All painkillers weigh heavily on the liver, and those taking Percocet are best advised to avoid alcohol completely due to the risk of liver damage. 

    The National Institute for Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) says that the liver, along with the heart, brain, and pancreas, are all organs negatively affected by alcohol.

    With continued use, a person will develop a tolerance to alcohol and painkillers and form an addiction. Those with a history of alcohol abuse are more likely to develop a dependence on opioid painkillers. Combining alcohol with Percocet increases the possibility of overdose and alcohol poisoning.

    Simultaneous use of alcohol and Percocet side effects include:

    • Constipation
    • Depressed respiratory system
    • Inability to focus thoughts
    • Low blood pressure
    • Liver failure
    • Heart attack
    • Colon cancer
    • Coma
    • Death 
    how long is Percocet stay in your system
    Treating a Percocet addiction can be a challenge. But there are many options available. 

    Percocet Overdose

    A person can overdose on Percocet if the drug is taken more often than prescribed, if tablets are crushed or chewed, or if it is combined with other drugs, such as alcohol or sleeping pills. Overdose is considered a medical emergency. Without prompt treatment, serious health effects and even death can occur. An overdose of oxycodone or acetaminophen (both present in Percocet) can cause death. Oxycodone may cause life-threatening withdrawal symptoms in a newborn if the mother has taken Percocet during pregnancy. In addition, fatal Percocet side effects can occur if a person uses Percocet with alcohol or with other drugs that cause drowsiness.

    Percocet Addiction Treatment

    First and foremost, if you think that a loved one is abusing Percocet or the counterfeit version known as yellow Percocet, you should first research the drug and addiction associated with it so that you can better understand what your loved one needs. Next, you must plan an intervention to provide your loved ones with options to battle their addiction in a safe and supportive environment. During this intervention, make sure that you offer compassion and support instead of judgment. Lastly, offer your support throughout the entire treatment process.

    In addition, prolonged Percocet use can have severe physical and psychological effects, so it is essential to seek treatment as soon as possible. Inpatient drug rehab offers intensive care that can help you get through the early stages of withdrawal promptly. 

    Medically-Assisted Detox

    Detox is often considered the first stage of treatment. It will help you navigate the complicated process of withdrawal, but it doesn’t address patterns of thought and behavior that contribute to drug use. Various treatment approaches and settings can help provide the ongoing support necessary to maintain long-term sobriety after you complete detox.

    Cravings are very common during detox and can be challenging to overcome. This often leads to relapse. Constant medical care provided during inpatient treatment helps prevent relapse. Clinicians can provide necessary medication and medical expertise to lessen cravings and the effects of withdrawals.


    Several different modalities of psychotherapy have been used in the treatment of mental health disorders along with addiction, including:

    • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) – is an effective treatment that involves making changes in both the patterns of negative thoughts and the behavioral routines which are affecting the daily life of the depressed person for various forms of depression.
    • Dialectical Behavior Therapy – is a comprehensive mental health and substance abuse treatment program whose ultimate goal is to aid patients in their efforts to build a life worth living. The main goal of DBT is to help a person develop what is referred to as a “clear mind.” 
    • Person-Centered Therapy – is a strategy that allows and encourages clients to understand and resolve their concerns in a safe, supportive environment.
    • Solution Focused Therapy – is an approach interested in solutions that can be quickly implemented with a simple first step leading to further positive consequences.

    Dual Diagnosis Treatment

    Drug abuse and mental health disorders often co-occur. In many cases, traumatic experiences can result in a mental health disorder and substance abuse. Dual diagnosis rehabilitation treats both of these issues together. The best approach for the treatment of dual diagnosis is an integrated system. In this strategy, both the substance abuse problem and the mental disorder are treated simultaneously. Regardless of which diagnosis (mental health or substance abuse problem) came first, long-term recovery will depend largely on the treatment for both disorders done by the same team or provider.

    Medication-Assisted Treatments

    Medication-Assisted Treatments (MAT) for substance use disorders and mental health disorders are commonly used in conjunction with one another. This includes the use of medications and other medical procedures. During your rehab, the staff from your treatment facility will help you identify what caused your addiction and teach you skills that will help you change your behavior patterns and challenge the negative thoughts that led to your addiction. Sometimes, the pressures and problems in your life lead you to rely on substances to help you forget about them momentarily.

    Now that we’ve answered the question “how long is Percocet stay in your system?”, do not try to detox on your own. The detox process can be painful and difficult without medical assistance. However, getting through the detox process is crucial for continued treatment. We Level Up provide proper care with round-the-clock medical staff to medically assist your recovery. So, reclaim your life, and call us to speak with one of our treatment specialists. Our counselors know what you are going through and will answer any of your questions.

    How Long Is Percocet Stay In Your System
    The most effective known treatment includes medical detox, inpatient treatment, and follow-up with long-term support.


    [1] NIH –
    [2] DEA –
    [3] FDA –
    [4] Percocet Addiction Treatment – We Level Up NJ