Journal Article

Disposition of Hydrocodone in Hair

Christine Moore, Michael Feldman, Edward Harrison, Sumandeep Rana, Cynthia Coulter, David Kuntz, Alpana Agrawal, Michael Vincent and James Soares

in Journal of Analytical Toxicology

Volume 30, issue 6, pages 353-359
Published in print July 2006 | ISSN: 0146-4760
Published online July 2006 | e-ISSN: 1945-2403 | DOI:
Disposition of Hydrocodone in Hair

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The use of prescription drugs, including synthetic opiates, is increasing in the U.S., with emergency room reports showing a dramatic rise in prescription opiate abuse. As part of an ongoing study, the hair of admitted opiate users was analyzed for hydrocodone and hydromorphone, as well as codeine, morphine, and 6-acetylmorphine in order to determine if there was any correlation between self-reported frequency of opiate intake and the concentration of drug detected in hair. The hairs were confirmed using gas chromatography-mass spectrometry following screening by enzyme linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). Twenty-four hair specimens collected from volunteers showed the presence of hydrocodone (130–15,933 pg/mg); four of those also contained hydromorphone (59–504 pg/mg). The specimens were alsoanalyzed for morphine, codeine, and 6-acetylmorphine. Hair specimens from five self-reported codeine users showed concentrations of hydrocodone between 592 and 15,933 pg/mg. In addition, codeine was present at concentrations of 575–20,543 pg/mg, but neither morphine nor hydromorphone were present in any of those hair specimens. Though the analysis of some opiates in hair has been previously published, this is the first study where the hydrocodone and hydromorphone concentrations have been measured following self-reported opiate intake.

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Subjects: Medical Toxicology ; Toxicology (Non-medical)

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