How Long Does Cymbalta Stay in Your System?

Prescribed for depression, anxiety, and certain types of pain, Cymbalta is the brand name for the drug duloxetine. This drug takes a while to build up in your system, and in most cases, you don’t feel the brain effects or other benefits until you have been taking Cymbalta for up to four weeks or longer.

After the last time taken, Cymbalta will continue to show up in drug tests, but the results are not the same for everyone. The timeline varies based on your personal factors and whether you’re screening your urine, blood, hair, or saliva. Keep reading to find out how long Cymbalta stays in your system.

Factors That Affect How Long Cymbalta Stays in Your System

The average person clears half a dose of Cymbalta from their body in about 12 hours. After another 12 hours, their body eliminates the remaining half of the drug, and this process repeats until all traces of the drug are gone.

A long list of factors affect how long your body takes to process Cymbalta and other drugs. In particular, the length of time a drug stays in your system can vary based on the following:

  • Genetics — Certain genetic factors can cause your body to process drugs faster or slower than the average person.
  • Age — As you get older, your body tends to process drugs more slowly.
  • Weight — Some drugs build up in fatty tissues, causing overweight people to test positive for longer periods of time.
  • Body mass — On the other hand, people who are larger tend to process drugs more quickly than smaller people taking the same dosage.
  • Metabolism — The faster your metabolism is, the faster your body will clear out drugs.
  • Hydration levels — If you’re not well hydrated, drug tests may be more likely to be positive. This fact affects urine tests in particular.
  • Physical activity — People who are physically active tend to have higher metabolisms which leads to lower elimination times.
  • Tolerance — As you build up a tolerance to a drug, your body tends to metabolize it faster. As a result, frequent users may process this drug more quickly than a first-time user.
  • Frequency of use — That said, if you use a drug frequently, it builds up in your system, and that can lead to a larger window for positive test results.
  • Other drugs taken — Some drugs may interact with Cymbalta and affect drug test results.

How Long Does Cymbalta Stay in Lab Tests?

If you take a lab test for Cymbalta, you should expect to test positive for the following amounts of time after the last time taken:

  • Urine: 2 to 7 days
  • Blood: 5 days
  • Hair: 90 days
  • Saliva: 5 days

Some antidepressants can cause you to test positive for other drugs. Before taking drug tests, be honest with the tester about the substances in your body. That helps to ensure you get the best results possible.

Keep in mind that Cymbalta needs to build up in your system to work properly. Your body gets used to this medication, and you shouldn’t stop taking it cold turkey. In fact, almost half of people experience uncomfortable withdrawal symptoms when they quit taking Cymbalta on their own.

They noted dizziness, nausea, and headaches, but about 65% of people say their symptoms go away in a week. This indicates that Cymbalta lingers in your system for a week on average, During this time, you may not receive the antidepressant brain effects of the drug, but as the drug leaves your body, it takes a physical toll on you.

How Long Does Cymbalta Stay in Your Urine?

Cymbalta is a  tricyclic antidepressant, and these drugs show up in urine tests for 2 to 7 days. But usually, you can’t detect Cymbalta in a urine test until about 8 hours after taking the medication. 

Urine tests results also vary based on your body mass, hydration levels, and acidity of your urine. Typically, if you use a drug frequently, it shows up in your urine for a longer period of time. 

For example, if someone uses marijuana once, it may only show up in their urine for a few days, but if they are a heavy user, it can show up in their urine for a month after the last time taken. The frequency of use can also affect how long Cymbalta shows up in drug tests for urine.

How Long Does Cymbalta Stay in Your Hair?

Researchers have not looked at how long Cymbalta stays in your hair, but most hair drug tests can see which drugs you have taken in the last 90 days. Depending on the test, Cymbalta may be detectable in hair follicles for 3 months. 

How Long Does Cymbalta Stay in Your Blood?

On average, Cymbalta shows up in your blood for 5 days. In other words, your body takes about five days to eliminate a dose of Cymbalta.

How Long Does Cymbalta Stay in Your Saliva?

Cymbalta is detectable in your saliva for about five days. Unfortunately, researchers have not spent much time looking at how long this drug shows up in a saliva screening. Instead, this number is based on the fact that the results of blood and saliva tests are usually the same.

As a general rule of thumb, if you’re trying to figure out how long a drug is detectable in a saliva screening, you can look at how long it lasts in blood tests. Again, however, test results are not the same for everyone. The half-life of a drug varies based on many personal factors.

If you want to quit taking Cymbalta, reach out for medical help today. If you’re struggling with prescription drug addiction, depression, and other issues, you are not alone. To get help, call Northeast Addictions Treatment Center today! You deserve a joyful life free of drugs and alcohol. We can help get you there together.


  1. Cymbalta
  2. Drug of Abuse Home Use Test
  3. How to Prepare for a Urine Test
  4. Hair Follicle Drug Test
  5. Appendix B. Urine Collection and Testing Procedures and Alternative Methods for Monitoring Drug Use
  6. Can Antidepressants Show Up on a Drug Test?
  7. Cymbalta Withdrawal Symptoms Timeline and Treatment

Written by
Northeast Addition Editorial Team

©2023 Northeast Addition Center | All Rights Reserved

This page does not provide medical advice.