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How long does naloxone stay active?

Naloxone is a medication used to reverse the effects of an opioid overdose. It works by blocking opioid receptors in the brain, restoring breathing and heart function.

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How long does naloxone stay active

Duration of Naloxone’s Action

The duration of naloxone’s action varies depending on how it is administered. Intravenous or intramuscular naloxone has an action duration of approximately 30 minutes, while nasal naloxone lasts for about 60 minutes.

Factors Influencing Naloxone’s Duration

Several factors can influence the duration of naloxone’s action, including:

  • The amount of opioids in the person’s system
  • The individual’s overall health
  • The person’s tolerance to opioids
  • Variability in individual response

It’s important to note that the response to naloxone can vary from person to person. Some individuals may respond quickly, while others may take longer to show a response.

Forms of Administration

Naloxone is available in three forms:

  1. Intravenous injection
  2. Intramuscular injection
  3. Nasal spray

Intravenous injection is the fastest way to administer naloxone, followed by intramuscular injection. Nasal spray is the slowest method but is the easiest to use.

Immediate Response and Duration

Most people will respond to naloxone within 2 minutes of administration. However, in some cases, it may take 5 to 10 minutes for a response to occur.

The typical duration of naloxone’s action in the body is about 30 minutes. However, additional doses may be required if the person experiences another overdose.

Reversal Signs and the Need for Medical Attention

Signs of overdose reversal after naloxone administration include:

  • Restoration of breathing
  • Regaining consciousness
  • Return of heart function

It’s important to seek additional medical attention after administering naloxone because naloxone can reverse the effects of opioids but cannot remove opioids from the body.

Specific Considerations

There are factors that can affect the duration of naloxone’s action, such as the amount of opioids in the person’s system. Individuals who have taken a large amount of opioids may require a higher dose of naloxone or multiple administrations.

Availability and Access to Naloxone

Naloxone is available in pharmacies and some overdose prevention programs. It is also available in the form of an auto-injection kit, which is user-friendly and can be administered by non-medical individuals.

Benefits of Naloxone

Naloxone is an effective medication for reversing opioid overdoses and has been proven to save lives.

Naloxone is a crucial tool in the fight against the opioid epidemic. By increasing the availability and access to naloxone, we can help prevent opioid overdose deaths.


Naloxone is an effective medication for reversing opioid overdoses. Understanding the duration of naloxone’s action is essential for its effective administration. Naloxone plays a vital role in combating the opioid epidemic.