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Does Kratom Show Up on a Drug Test?

Thinking of trying kratom, but wonder does kratom show up in drug tests? It is actually a somewhat tricky question. There isn’t a single answer. 

In some cases, no, and in some cases, yes. To really understand the intricacies, let’s look at some facts about kratom before discussing drug tests.

Is Kratom a Kind of Drug?

Kratom Plant


Kratom is a psychoactive drug in the same way that coffee is. In fact, the kratom plant — or Mitragyna speciosa — is in the coffee family Rubiaceae. It’s in a different class than a cup of coffee, though.

  • It can be used recreationally in larger and more potent amounts. However, more often, it is used moderately for natural wellness as an herbal supplement.
  • Many kratom users in the U.S. use it for its analgesic effects to ease chronic pain. 
  • Some others use it to calm anxiety, boost energy and focus, or even mitigate withdrawal symptoms.
  • At Organa Kratom, you can find strains meant to help you energize, balance, or unwind, for example. 
  • This is possible because kratom functions as a stimulant in small amounts and a depressant in larger quantities. 

Here’s where things get complicated and why you might be concerned about a drug test. Kratom has been more closely scrutinized than coffee or even CBD because it interacts with the body’s central opioid receptors.

Is Kratom Related to Opioids Then?

Natural and synthetic opiates are notoriously addictive, of course. Kratom does have the potential to be addictive, and you can develop some tolerance with sustained use. But it isn’t an opioid because it has a different chemical structure and no relation to opium or morphine.

Instead, the major alkaloid compounds found in kratom are mitragynine and 7-hydroxymitragynine (7-HMG). Of the two, mitragynine is the safer, less potent substance, and it’s what you’ll find the most of in kratom. 

Additionally, mitragynine does not cause the same receptor-protein interactions as opioids. That means it’s highly unlikely to slow or stop your breathing (which occurs during an opioid overdose) and doesn’t in itself encourage dependence.

All in all, what does kratom feel like if it targets our opioid receptors but isn’t an opioid? 

  • In substantial amounts, it has physiological effects (and some side effects) similar to opioids, but they should be less. With responsible, moderate use, those effects should be much less versus opioids.
  • They include lowered sensitivity to pain, a slowed body and mind, and an elated mood. 
  • But as we mentioned before, it functions as a stimulant, like caffeine at low doses. 

It’s always best to start with your lowest effective dose for intended results, so be sure to check out Organa Kratom’s dosage guidelines.

Understanding Kratom and Drug Tests

Knowing its background is imperative to understanding why kratom is often contested. Opioid abuse is a wide-scale concern, and kratom falls into an opioid-like category. In 2016, the DEA considered making kratom a Schedule 1 banned substance until they were met with public outcry. They opted to name kratom as a drug of concern.

While kratom remains legal at the federal level, it is illegal in several states and a couple of counties and cities.

So, if an employer is particularly interested, they may have a kratom drug test at the ready. 

When Doesn’t Kratom Show Up on a Drug Test?

It’s highly unlikely kratom would be detected on standard 4 or 5-panel drug tests. But not all tests are created equal, and kratom isn’t a widespread concern. In addition, testing is limited to smaller panels. Even a more rigorous 7-panel test is unlikely to register kratom. 

The Department of Transportation’s test is an excellent example. 

  • In 2018, they updated their 5-panel to include a total of 14 detected drugs. 
  • Specifically, they increased the “opiates” category (which checked for codeine, morphine, and heroin) to a broader “opioids” category, which included synthetic opioids like prescription painkillers.
  • Although prescription painkillers are legal, as is kratom in most cases, it’s still at the employer’s discretion whether or not to test for them.

Would this effectively make it a kratom drug test in 2018? The answer is no.

Opioid-like is just not opioid enough. Remember that kratom doesn’t share any structural similarities with opioids. Mitragynine and 7-HMG (or other kratom alkaloids) won’t come up in your results unless someone is specifically looking for and identifying them.

You’re also highly unlikely to get a kratom false positive for the same reason. If you’re taking kratom and register a false positive, you shouldn’t panic. Wait for a closer analysis to come back, and consider any other possible triggers or interactions.

When Does Kratom Show Up on a Drug Test? 

Kratom and Drug Test

It is important not to get complacent. It is not as if there are no kratom urine tests. The appropriate alkaloids will show up clear as day with the kratom-specific tests available on the market. 

And it’s possible to add kratom detection on larger panel tests. Once you’re at 10-panel or greater, there’s an abundance of testing occurring. At that point, the employer is checking outside the realm of what’s simply illegal. 

Does kratom always show up on a 12-panel drug test? Not necessarily. It still isn’t one of the most commonly tested substances. However, the evidence will technically be there if results are analyzed or interpreted further.

How Long Does Kratom Stay in Your System?

Kratom in Your System

  • Generally speaking, kratom is metabolized and flushed through your system in about a week. 
  • You might expect to register as positive up to 7 days later. 
  • Trace quantities may still linger afterward, but it may not be significant enough to trigger a positive.

How long kratom stays in your system is impacted by several factors, including:

  • Usage: Consistent, regular use results in overall elevated levels, and it takes longer to fully leave your system.
  • Dosage: Larger doses will take longer to be fully metabolized.
  • Weight and Body Fat: Mitragynine is absorbed by fatty tissue, so more bodyweight will let it stay in your system for longer
  • Age: Older bodies metabolize more slowly.


Let’s recap.

  1. Does kratom show up on drug tests? Yes, on some of the extensive ones, like 10 or 12-panel. But not on all 10 or 12-panel tests. And usually not on standard smaller drug tests either. 
  2. It doesn’t show up because even though kratom binds to our opioid receptors, it isn’t structurally or chemically similar to opium (or its derivative, morphine). Additionally, it’s not often tested for since it isn’t a mainstream substance and isn’t federally illegal.
  3. But it is illegal in some states or areas, so it may be a substance of interest. Kratom can be detected with specialized tests designed to discover it. It will usually remain in a person’s system for about 7 days, but that’s dependent on a host of other factors.

In most cases, you won’t have anything to worry about. Are you feeling reassured and ready to reap some of the benefits of kratom? Be sure to get only the highest quality products backed by lab testing, like those offered at Organa Kratom

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