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LSD, also known under its street name “acid,” is a potent psychedelic drug with the same drug scheduling as heroin and MDMA. Acid is commonly abused for its hallucinogenic effects among teenagers and young adults in nightclubs, raves, festivals, and concert settings. While standard drug tests don’t typically screen for LSD, several factors influence its metabolism and detection window.

Understanding Acid (LSD) and Its Effects

Lysergic acid diethylamide, commonly referred to as LSD or acid, is a synthetic hallucinogenic drug that is often recreationally abused. LSD produces visual hallucinations and delusions that distort mood, perception, and cognitive processes. The primary effects of acid typically result from its stimulation of central serotonin receptors in the brain (5-HT2) following its interaction with the central and autonomic nervous systems. Acid (LSD) is ingested orally through a liquid or applied to blotter paper, sugar cubes, or tablets. LSD’s effects can be unpredictable depending on the individual’s health status, age, environment, and the dosage.

The potential effects of LSD include:

  • Dilated pupils
  • Higher body temperature
  • Visual hallucinations
  • Intense emotional changes
  • Euphoria
  • Anxiety or paranoia
  • Altered thought patterns
  • Enhanced perception of colors, shapes, and sounds
  • Sweating
  • Increased heart rate
  • High blood pressure
  • Appetite loss
  • Sleeplessness
  • Dry mouth
  • Tremors

Acid’s side effects can vary widely but typically go into effect within 30 to 90 minutes of ingestion, lasting anywhere from 6 to 12 hours. LSD is a Schedule 1 drug under the Controlled Substances Act, meaning it has a high potential for abuse and has no approval for medical use in the United States. Overconsumption of LSD can lead to overdose, resulting in a more intense “trip,” psychosis, and even death.

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How Is Acid Metabolized in the Body?

When LSD is ingested, it rapidly absorbs through the gastrointestinal (GI) tract and enters the bloodstream to distribute through the body and brain. LSD primarily metabolizes in the liver, with liver enzymes breaking it down into different chemicals.

The liver enzymes, specifically those in the cytochrome P450 family (CYP), play a significant role in acid metabolism. LSD’s primarily metabolite formation, 2-oxo-3-hydroxy-LSD (O-H-LSD), is an inactive byproduct of LSD formed through oxidative reactions and is less potent than acid.

LSD and its metabolites are excreted from the body through the kidneys to the urine. LSD and its metabolites, 2-oxo-3-hydroxy-LSD, are detectable in the urine for up to 4 days following ingestion. The half-life of LSD is approximately 3 hours, meaning that the concentration of acid reduces in the bloodstream by half every 3 hours. While LSD’s concentration may decrease, its psychoactive effects can last much longer in the brain.

How Long Does LSD Stay in Your System?

The detection window for LSD (lysergic acid diethylamide) is relatively short but can vary depending on the type of drug test used and several factors. The factors influencing how long LSD stays in your system include:

  1. The dose and frequency of use
  2. Metabolic rate
  3. Age
  4. Health status
  5. Body mass
  6. Hydration
  7. Genetic variations

Higher doses of acid (LSD) can remain detectable in the system longer than someone who only ingested a small dose. Just as much, someone who takes LSD consistently may have a longer detection window for it than someone who doesn’t. Individuals with a faster metabolism may process and eliminate acid from their system quicker than individuals with slow metabolic rates.

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An individual’s age, liver function, and overall health status can significantly influence how LSD is metabolized and excreted in the body. Liver function can decline with age alongside certain health conditions, which influences the metabolic rate of LSD. The amount of body fat someone has, and their hydration levels may also affect LSD’s concentration and elimination. Genetic differences in liver enzymes, such as CYP2D6, can impact how slowly or quickly acid is metabolized, affecting the duration and intensity of its effects.

The Detection Window for Acid (LSD) in Different Types of Drug Tests

LSD’s detection window for the urine, blood, saliva, and hair varies differently for each type of drug test. Due to its rapid metabolic rate and short half-life, acid can remain detectable in the blood for up to 12 hours after use. The detection window for acid in the saliva is typically 1-2 days post-ingestion. However, saliva drug tests are not commonly used to screen for lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD). A hair follicle test can detect acid and its metabolites for extended perching up to 90 days after use.

LSD is detectable in the urine for up to 24 hours following use. Its metabolites, specifically 2-oxo-3-hydroxy-LSD, can be detected in the urine for 2-4 days. While LSD’s metabolites detection window is higher than itself, a standard drug test, which is a urine drug test (UDT), does not typically screen for LSD.

The SAMHSA-5 drug test typically screens for amphetamines, cocaine, marijuana (THC), opiates, and phencyclidine (PCP). Additional drug test categories may include benzodiazepines, alcohol, hydrocodone, MDMA, methadone, barbiturates, methaqualone, and propoxyphene. Therefore, acid (LSD) will not show up on most standard drug tests for employment or other purposes.

Specialized drug tests for LSD may include high-performance thin-layer chromatography (HPTLC) and forms of gas chromatography/mass spectrometry (GC/MS) and liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS).

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LSD Abuse and Addiction: Drug Detox Treatment in Stuart, FL

While LSD is known for its abuse potential, it also holds the potential for addiction and tolerance development. With frequent use of LSD, users may become accustomed to and develop a tolerance to the hallucinogenic drug. This results in the consumption of higher doses of acid, increasing the risks of adverse side effects and potential overdose. The use of LSD can lead to psychological dependence, but users will not become physically dependent on the substance.

LSD abuse can quickly escalate to an addiction, especially in young adults and teenagers frequently using it for its hallucinogenic properties. Although LSD typically has a non-addictive nature, the abuse of psychedelics can result in dangerous “trips” and potential overdose. Understanding the possible risks and dangers of acid (LSD) use is essential for preventing substance abuse and severe mental health risks.

Reach out today for South Florida drug detox programs in Stuart, FL. At Coastal Detox, we want to help you reclaim your life. Your path to healing and sobriety starts here!