How Long Does Librium Stay In One’s System? Drug Test

Last Updated: May 7, 2020

Authored by Olivier George, Ph.D.

As with any drug, Librium metabolites stay in the system for a certain period after the drug is ingested. The length of this period depends on several factors, such as Librium half-life. Knowing for how long Librium lasts in one’s system can help the user avoid a possible overdose or a misunderstanding regarding a drug test.

Librium Half-Life

The half-life of Librium varies from five hours to 30 hours. This means that half of the ingested dose will be eliminated from the system during this timeframe. Such a wide window is caused by the fact that the rate at which chlordiazepoxide is removed from the system depends on many factors.

How Long Does Librium Stay In One’s System?

Librium shows up on a drug test as a benzodiazepine. Although there is no specific test for chlordiazepoxide, the drug can show up on a normal 5-panel drug test that detects benzodiazepines such as Valium, Xanax, Ativan, Halcion, Serax, Klonopin, and Rohypnol. This test is usually requested by employers who want to check if their employees or job applicants take any prescription or OTC drug.

Blood Test

A Librium blood test can detect the drug within six to 48 hours after the last ingestion. A blood test for this drug is as common as other testing methods but might be required if Librium use is suspected.

Urine Test

In a routine urine test, Librium will show up as benzodiazepine. Librium stays in urine for up to 6 weeks since the last dose, mainly because chlordiazepoxide is excreted through urine.

librium urine drug test

Saliva Test

Requiring a saliva test for Librium is uncommon, but some agencies and employers might use it. The drug can be detected in saliva for up to 10 days.

Hair Test

A hair Librium drug test has the most extended detection window, compared to blood, saliva, and urine tests, which only detect current or very recent Librium use. Although an uncommon test, it might be used when chlordiazepoxide is not likely to be detected using other test methods. The substance can be detected in hair for up to 90 days.

Factors That Affect Detection Window

The time Librium lasts in one’s system and the detection window depend on several factors.

Physiological Factors

  • Age and genetics – the older the patients are, the slower metabolism they have. This means that the substance will not be processed at a normal level in elderly patients, and their kidneys will not manage to get rid of the substance from the system as fast as a younger patient. In an older patient, the drug will stay in the system longer, offering a longer window in the case of the Librium drug test.
  • Overall health – if the patient suffers from certain diseases, such as those affecting the liver or kidneys, the drug will be absorbed much slower.
  • Body mass index – because fatty tissues highly absorb Librium, people who are overweight will experience prolonged drug effects.

what affect drug test

Methods Of Use

  • Quantity – the more chlordiazepoxide is used, the longer it will take to be processed, and the longer the effects will linger in the system.
  • Method – when administered intravenously, the substance will be absorbed and processed much faster. At the same time, the pill form will stay in the system the longest, therefore with an extended half-life of Librium.
  • Frequency – smaller amounts taken frequently are similar to larger amounts taken infrequently. This means that there will be more drug in the system if it is taken frequently, and it will take longer for the system to process it.

Other Drugs Taken

If the patient takes other drugs while on Librium, this will affect the drug’s elimination time. This happens because chlordiazepoxide needs a certain enzyme that breaks it, and if this enzyme is used by other substances at the same time, the rate of drug clearance will be slowed down.

What If Librium Is Detected On A Drug Test

If the results of a drug test are positive, they are reviewed by a physician who is certified as a Medical Review Officer. If the positive result of Librium on a drug test is confirmed, the person tested will be asked for proof of a legitimate prescription for chlordiazepoxide. If it is on a prescription, the results might be deemed negative. The situation might change if the employee is in a safety-sensitive position, and the substance causes impairment or affects the quality of work.

There are several scenarios when the person tested does not have a prescription for the drug. The employee might face disciplinary action, lose the job, be referred for treatment, Employee Assistance Programs, or a substance abuse specialist. Some employers do not hire a job applicant who tested positive for Librium or other benzodiazepines, even if they are taken by prescription. For these reasons, it is preferable for a person to inform the employer before starting a treatment with this medication.

false positive librium drug test

Can Librium Cause A False Positive?

When it comes to urine Librium drug test, one of its limitations would be the false-positive results caused by the interference of drugs that have a similar structure.

Since Librium belongs to the benzodiazepine class, there are some medications that might cause a false-positive for this drug during a urine test. Such medications include sertraline (Zoloft), oxaprozin (Daypro), etodolac (Lodine), fenoprofen (Nalfon), tolmetin (Tolectin) and naproxen (Aleve).

That is why, anyone taking any medications and is being tested for Librium, should mention this to the person administering the test to avoid the possibility of a false-positive result.

Librium Can Be Addictive

Chlordiazepoxide is among the most abused drugs in the US, that is why a positive result of Librium on drug test, will have repercussions on the person who uses the drug, sometimes even if this is on prescription.

As benzo, chlordiazepoxide can lead to physical dependence and addiction, which might result in Librium withdrawal symptoms. Any person with an addiction can find help in a rehab center. There, the staff of medical workers provides all levels of care and treatment options to fight benzodiazepine addiction.

Page Sources

  1. Kulig K. Interpretation of Workplace Tests for Cannabinoids. Journal of Medical Toxicology. 2017; 13(1): 106‐110. doi:10.1007/s13181-016-0587-z.
  2. Drug Testing. SAMHSA. 2020.
  3. Benzodiazepines (Urine). University of Rochester Medical Center Rochester.

Published on: June 9th, 2017

Updated on: May 7th, 2020

About Author

Olivier George, Ph.D.

Olivier George is a medical writer and head manager of the rehab center in California. He spends a lot of time in collecting and analyzing the traditional approaches for substance abuse treatment and assessing their efficiency.


Leave a comment

  • Lori
    I took 75 mg of Librium 3 1/2 weeks ago and it still comes up as a positive for Benzos. Is this normal! How long is this going to stay in my system? I have had UA’s 3 times this week and they are all positive. How do I get this out of my system? Asap Please help
  • Cody
    I took it for a week as well, and only took a week to get out of my system to
  • Quinn
    I took 100mg of Librium day 1 and then 50 milligrams total only 2nd day. How long will it take to get out of my system. No long term use of benzos but have urine test 4 days after and wondering if I will be safe. I’m 35 super healthy low body fatand have been juicing multiple time a day and eating and hydrating well.
  • Meredith
    I was in the hospital for alcohol withdrawal a week ago and received my last dose of Ativan on Tuesday. Then, on Thursday I was given 50mg of Librium at 4am and then 25mh of Librium. I am trying to get back into my sober living house, but can’t have benzos in my urine. How can I quickly get rid of them? I’m 38, have 21% body fat, but have had a kidney issue over the Summer and from alcohol use my liver enzymes could be better. Otherwise, perfect health. I drink tons of water and take vitamins.