Modafinil and Drug Tests [Updated u2022 2022] What You MUST Know

A recent study shows that more than half of all students have misused their prescriptions, which is a leading cause for drug tests failing. The FDA has recently announced that it will begin requiring employers to check for modafinil in urine samples – and some companies are implementing the new policy now. What does this mean? Here’s what you need to know about these changes.

Modafinil and Drug Tests [Updated • 2022] What You MUST Know. Modafinil is a medication that has been used to treat narcolepsy, shift work sleep disorder, and obstructive sleep apnea. It’s also been used as a cognitive enhancer for healthy people.

Modafinil and Drug Tests [Updated • 2022] What You MUST Know

It is in your best advantage to be equipped with clear facts when it comes to Modafinil and drug testing.

Anonymous testimonies and speculative data will not provide a definitive response to the question:

Is Modafinil detectable in a drug test?

Drug testing may be required as part of a new work position in the private sector or the government. Whether you’re an athlete, find out if Modafinil drug testing are used in your sport and at your level.

When it comes to Modafinil and drug testing, you just cannot afford to be uneducated.

That is why we have put together this guide to help you better understand how your Modafinil drug test could function.

NOTE: It goes without saying that you should treat the information below with caution. We are not liable for any employment-related or other repercussions that may arise as a result of your inability to pass a drug test or other comparable examination. While we make every effort to keep the material in this book up to date, you should never depend solely on it and should always perform your own research before making any choice that might impact your job, professional, or academic status or eligibility, or reputation.

 

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What Does Modafinil Mean?

Before we get into the specifics of Modafinil drug tests, it’s important to understand what Modafinil is and why certain employers are testing for it so often.

Modafinil is a eugeroic, which is a medication that promotes wakefulness. Although it was developed in the early 1970s, it was not licensed for narcolepsy therapy in France until 1994.

Modafinil was subsequently authorized by the US Food and Drug Administration in 1998 for the same reason and given the brand name “Provigil.” It was subsequently authorized as a therapy for shift work sleep disorder and obstructive sleep apnea, which causes excessive daytime drowsiness.

While the specific mechanism of action is unknown, studies have identified the following [1]:

“…Modafinil boosts dopamine, serotonin, histamine, glutamate, and GABA levels in the brain, among other substances and neurotransmitters.

Although its structure is distinct and not similar to other medicines, studies have demonstrated that modafinil’s wake-promoting effects are comparable to stimulants like amphetamine and methylphenidate.”

Pilots, day traders, CEOs, entrepreneurs, and Ivy League students who desire to remain awake all night, improve their focus, and become unstoppable productivity machines have been drawn to these benefits.

The following is a quote from an unnamed undergraduate student in the United Kingdom [2]:

“You don’t feel quick, you don’t feel euphoric… That’s why I took it, since it was pleasant and didn’t make me feel high… [Modafinil] makes you feel like you’ve had a cup of coffee that lasted all day.”

Many of these students are apprehensive about being tested for Modafinil before crucial examinations, which is why the topic “Will Provigil show up on a drug test?” continues cropping up on Internet discussion boards.

Let’s look at how Modafinil drug testing operate with this in mind.

 

The Basics of Modafinil and Drug Tests

Is Modafinil detected during drug tests? Let’s have a look at how Modafinil is metabolized and eliminated from the human body before we attempt to address this issue.

How Long Does Modafinil Remain in Your System?

We have an excellent grasp of how the body absorbs Modafinil because to the work of Dr. Nancy Wong and her team of researchers in 1999 [3, 4]:

  1. Modafinil is converted into two inactive products: modafinil acid and modafinil sulfone, which are eliminated in the urine.
  2. The principal metabolic product, modafinil acid, accounts approximately 35-60% of the whole Modafinil dosage (therefore, 40-65 percent of any Modafinil you take actually gets transmitted into your bloodstream)
  3. The quantity of modafinil sulfone produced is so little that it is considered inconsequential.
  4. The half-life of modafinil is 10-15 hours (i.e., it takes 10-15 hours for the total concentration of Modafinil in your body to be reduced by half)
  5. How the body functions Modafinil dosages of 200 mg and 800 mg are the same.

Let’s use a hypothetical scenario to see how long a normal dosage of Modafinil takes to be entirely removed from your body.

From hour “zero,” a healthy adult guy receives a 200mg dosage of Modafinil.

Assume we’re dealing with a 15-hour half-life and that 65 percent of the initial Modafinil dosage stays in our circulation as the active Modafinil molecule (130mg).

Here’s how Modafinil removal may look over time, and how much you have in your body when each half-life passes [5]:

  • Hour #15: 65 mg (50 percent left)
  • Hour #30: 32.5 mg (25 percent left)
  • Hour #45 16.25 mg (12.5 percent left)
  • Hour #60: 8.125 mg (6.25 percent left)
  • Hour #75: 4.063 mg (3.125 percent left)
  • Hour #90: 2.031 mg (1.56 percent left)
  • Hour #105: 1.016 mg (0.78 percent left)

As you can see, Modafinil stays in your system significantly longer than its cognition-boosting benefits, which last between 12 and 20 hours, according to users. After taking Modafinil, it takes a total of 4.4 days (105 hours) for it to stay in our bodies in trace concentrations, and it takes roughly 7 days for the substance to be entirely gone.

Keep in mind that Modafinil’s half-life, and therefore how long it takes to clear Modafinil from your body, is influenced by a variety of circumstances. Here are a few of the most significant:

  • The drug’s sterility (contaminants can make Modafinil clearance faster or slower)
  • Age (older people clear out Modafinil at a slower rate than younger people)
  • Females remove Modafinil more quickly than men [3, 4].
  • [6] Race/Ethnicity
  • Genetics
  • Bodyweight
  • Modafinil metabolization and absorption disorders (kidney/liver dysfunction, for example)
  • Modafinil* metabolizing enzyme CYP3A4 is inhibited or stimulated by drugs, meals, and natural supplements [7].

* Because inducing an enzyme increases its metabolic efficiency, Modafinil is eliminated from your body quicker and its cognitive-enhancing benefits last longer. Because inhibiting an enzyme causes it to become more metabolically inefficient, Modafinil is removed from your body more slowly and its cognitive-enhancing benefits stay longer.

All of this applies to a single dosage of Modafinil; taking a dose of Modafinil every day, on the other hand, will take much longer to eradicate.

What Kinds of Modafinil Drug Tests Might I Face?

Without first knowing how drug testing bodies look for modafinil, no discussion of modafinil and drug testing is complete.

Your blood and urine are the only two body fluids where we can reliably track Modafinil [8].

Urine tests are meant to trace a drug’s metabolites for many hours after it has been used. They’re less expensive than blood testing.

Within 2-12 hours after delivery, blood tests are intended to precisely identify the medication. The samples are also significantly less vulnerable to manipulation than urine testing, making it the most accurate sampling approach to date. They are, however, significantly more costly and intrusive than urine tests, which is why they are not as prevalent.

An immunoassay is used to “screen” for drugs in either sample, with a GC-MS (gas chromatography-mass spectrometry) or LC-MS (liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry) test to validate the findings. It is exceedingly unlikely that these tests may produce false positives or negatives because of their excellent sensitivity and specificity [9]:

  • False positive indicates that a substance is present in your system when it is not.
  • False negative indicates that a substance is not present in your system when it is.

Keep in mind that these tests will only work if they are searching for Modafinil specifically.

At concentrations as low as 2 ng/mL, modafinil may be consistently detected and correctly quantified [10]. For reference, 1 ng is 0.000001 mg! Modafinil has a “minimum needed performance limit” of 500 ng/mL for the World Anti-Doping Agency to declare an athlete doping [11].

 

 

Is Modafinil detectable in a drug test?

Is Provigil detectable on a drug test? The fact is that it is fully dependent on the circumstances.

To begin, you must have someone with authorization do the necessary blood or urine tests stated before. In other words, they must be hunting for Modafinil on purpose.

Second, depending on how long ago you used Modafinil, your Modafinil drug tests will be positive or negative.

It took 72-80 hours for 100mg of Modafinil to be totally eliminated and undetectable in the urine samples of healthy 20-something male participants in two different trials [12, 13].

If you want a decent probability that your drug test will come back negative, you must take it at least 80 hours after using Modafinil. To be even safer, the test should be performed a week following your last Modafinil medication.

Because Modafinil has a molecular structure that is distinct from amphetamine and other stimulants, a “false positive” result is exceedingly uncommon.

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“Corporate America” and modafinil

For various reasons, both private businesses and government agencies are unlikely to worry about your Modafinil usage when it comes to drug testing.

To begin with, employers will only test their staff for drugs in very particular situations:

  • They have cause to believe you are a drug addict.
  • The medications in issue reduce your productivity and cause you to make errors for which they may be held guilty;
  • Some organizations require all new workers to take a drug test, which is rare but not unheard of.

Second, Modafinil isn’t the kind of medicine that usually raises concerns about worker productivity.

Modafinil, on the other hand, may “sharpen your attention, helping you to make better judgments and remember more information, cope effectively with new ideas, and manage multitasking dexterously” [14].

Why would a firm terminate someone who is trying to improve their mental condition and earn the company more money when there are almost no negative effects and no addictive features for the great majority of users?

Third, your employer’s routine drug tests simply do not search for Modafinil.

They will conduct “drug panels,” in which a urine sample will be obtained to screen for one or more of the following substances [15]:

Cocaine, marijuana, PCP, amphetamines, opiates, benzodiazepines, barbiturates, methadone, propoxyphene, Quaaludes, Ecstasy/MDA/MDMA, & Oxycodone/Percocet.

A four-panel test would look at the first four, a five-panel test would look at the first five, and so on… up to and including a comprehensive 12-panel drug test

Because bulk tests are scalable and cheap, they may be performed on thousands of workers at once.

Even if your company wants to test for Modafinil, doing so on one person would most likely be a highly costly and time-consuming operation.

In truth, most businesses don’t have the time or resources to check all of an employee’s prescription medications 99 times out of 100.

Please bear in mind, however, that employers have the authority to require you to submit to a drug test at any time.

Additionally, if a normal company does any kind of Modafinil drug test and the result is positive, you may face sanctions if you do not have a Modafinil prescription (a Schedule IV, prescription-only drug).

 

 

Military Use of Modafinil

The military discovered modafinil’s remarkable cognition-enhancing benefits early on, which is one of the reasons it has achieved widespread appeal today [16].

You definitely wouldn’t have to worry about Modafinil drug tests being positive unless they are particularly checking for it, just like in Corporate America. And their existing standardized drug testing procedures do not detect Modafinil.

We’ve heard anecdotal accounts of troops using Adrafinil instead of Modafinil. Adrafinil is a totally legal over-the-counter alternative, yet since Modafinil is the major metabolite of Adrafinil, drug tests for Modafinil would also be positive.

While one person was allegedly dismissed from the military due to Modafinil usage and possession, that person was also charged with leaving the scene of an accident after a narcoleptic episode [17].

 

Athletics and Modafinil

When it comes to Modafinil and drug testing in professional sports, the situation is quite different.

Many international sports organizations consider Modafinil to be a performance-enhancing substance and conduct testing to guarantee you don’t have any in your system before any event.

The usage of Modafinil and Armodafinil has been formally forbidden by the following organizations:

  • [18] National Collegiate Athletic Association
  • Any athletic organization that is supervised by WADA [19].
  • USADA (United States Anti-Doping Agency) [20]
  • [21] The Olympic Games
  • [22] Crossfit
  • The Electronic Sports League (ESL) is a professional video game tournament organization [23].

Modafinil is also regarded a forbidden substance in places where chess is legally recognized as a sport, and is susceptible to detection by drug testing [24]!

These organizations classify modafinil as a stimulant: something that may shorten the time it takes to feel tired, improve response speed, and boost alertness…all of which can provide enough of a competitive advantage to make it a prohibited chemical.

Long-term bans from participating, disqualification from the event for which testing was done, and loss of official standing and/or prize money are all possible punishments if an athlete is detected with Modafinil in their system.

There are several cases in history of high-level athletes who have tested positive for Modafinil and have lost or forfeited a significant amount of money [25].

Even if a therapeutic use exemption can be obtained prior to competition, we cannot conceive of any justification that would justify the special hazards of Modafinil use that professional athletes experience.

To summarize, professional sportsmen that are susceptible to drug testing should avoid Modafinil!

 

For Truckers, Modafinil

This section will apply to many — but not all — truck drivers in the United States, so be sure to look into the laws and regulations that may apply to you.

On what it’s worth, there are conflicting reports on Modafinil’s advantages for driving performance [25]:

“Modafinil has some advantages in terms of objective driving performance when sleep deprivation is present. It may, however, cause overconfidence, indicating that its usage as a sleepiness countermeasure while driving warrants additional investigation.”

Obtaining a commercial drivers’ license (CDL) in the United States will need a medical check.

The Department of Transportation (DOT) demands a basic 5-panel drug test, identical to the one used by most businesses. As a result, most truck driver candidates will not be subjected to Modafinil drug testing.

This does not, however, imply that you are free to take Modafinil without a prescription.

According to the Modafinil product monograph, it may impair your ability to do dangerous jobs and drive heavy machines. That’s reason enough for a medical examiner to be concerned.

“Until a [commercial motor vehicle (CMV) driver] understands how Provigil affects him/her, they may not drive, operate equipment, or perform any activity that needs mental alertness,” according to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) [26].

To put it another way [27], this means:

“Provigil must be used under under supervision. Provigil-taking drivers should not be certified unless they have been thoroughly supervised for at least 6 weeks while on the drug.

The medical examiner will seek proof from your treating physician [i.e. a PCP medical release form] confirming that the therapy is successful and that there are no adverse effects that may impair your ability to safely drive a commercial vehicle.”

That means you’ll need a prescription and authorization from a medical examiner to take Modafinil while driving a truck.

Medical examiners may refuse your clearance even if you receive approval from your prescribing doctor and a clean drug panel test if they have grounds to feel it is too dangerous for you to take Modafinil during your trucking shifts.

 

Is Modafinil Detectable in Drug Tests? | The Final Word

Will Modafinil show up as a positive result on a drug test? It most certainly will if two conditions are met:

  1. A exam is given to you. Specifically searching for Modafinil usage.
  2. You used Modafinil before it has cleared your system completely (i.e. less than 70-80 hours before the test is taken) 

However, as far as we know, companies seldom spend a lot of money for Modafinil drug tests. Most of the time, they’re hunting for illegal narcotics like marijuana and amphetamines.

Athletes, on the other hand, don’t have it easy; there’s a strong possibility you’ll be tested for it. If you test positive for Modafinil during a drug test, you should expect to face repercussions. As a result, we advise athletes to stay away from it entirely.

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References

  1. Modafinil: Workaholic Crutch Or Smart Drug For Decision Fatigue drugs.com (accessed May 24, 2020).
  2. A. Steward and M. Pickersgill. Exploring the legitimacy of modafinil usage among UK undergraduate students by developing knowledge, customizing sleep, and improving study methods. 2019;26(4):347–355. doi:10.1080/09687637.2018.1555231.
  3. YN Wong, D Simcoe, LN Hartman, et al. The pharmacokinetics and tolerability of modafinil tablets were studied in healthy male volunteers in a double-blind, placebo-controlled, ascending-dose study. 10.1177/00912709922007534 J Clin Pharmacol. 1999;39(1):30-40.

  4. YN Wong, SP King, D Simcoe, et al. The effect of age and gender in normal participants in an open-label, single-dose pharmacokinetic study of modafinil tablets. J Clin Pharmacol, 39(3), 281-288, 1999.

  5. Calculator for drug elimination. observablehq.com (accessed May 23, 2020).
  6. KH Wu, T Guo, CH Deng, et al. Modafinil acid population pharmacokinetics and metabolic conversion of modafinil to modafinil acid in five main ethnic groups in China. 2012;33(11):1401-1408. doi:10.1038/aps.2012.124
  7. Tables of Pharmacogenomic Associations mayocliniclabs.com (accessed May 24, 2020).
  8. Objective Testing: Urine and Other Drug Tests, Hadland SE, Levy S. Psychiatr Clin North Am. 2016;25(3):549-565. doi:10.1016/j.chc.2016.02.005.
  9. FAQs on Drug Testing drugs.com, retrieved May 25, 2020
  10. A Critical Review of Modafinil Properties and Analytical, Bioanalytical Methods for Its Determination, Ramachandra B. 2016;46(6):482–489. doi:10.1080/10408347.2016.1153948.

  11. Doping control analysis for adrafinil and its main metabolites in human urine. Lu J, Wang X, Yang S, et al. Rapid Communications in Mass Spectrometry. 2009;23(11):1592-1600. doi:10.1002/rcm.4044.

  12. S. Dubey, S. Ahi, I. M. Reddy, T. Kaur, A. Beotra, and S. Jain. A unique investigation using EI-GC-MS and ESI-LC-MS-MS ionization to screen and confirm modafinil, adrafinil, and their metabolite modafinilic acid. Indian Journal of Pharmacology, 41(6), 278–283. doi:10.4103/0253-7613.59928
  13. YL Tseng, V Uralets, CT Lin, FH Kuo Gas chromatography-mass spectrometry was used to detect modafinil in human urine. 2005;39(5):1042-1045 in J Pharm Biomed Anal. doi:10.1016/j.jpba.2005.04.050

  14. Why modafinil may be the “smart medication” that revolutionizes how we live and work. oregonlive.com, retrieved May 22, 2020.

  15. What Do Different Drug Panels Mean? mobilehealth.net (accessed May 26, 2020).
  16. The Sleep Wars. The date is May 25, 2020. slate.com
  17. Military Law: Dismissal from the military without cause, as well as abuse of authority and defamation of reputation. r/legaladvice Retrieved on May 25, 2020.
  18. Characteristics of drug and dietary supplement enquiries by collegiate athletes, Ambrose PJ, Tsourounis C, Olander R, Uryasz F. doi:10.1177/1941738109347978. Sports Health. 2010;2(1):1218.
  19. In-Competition Prohibition wada-ama.org (accessed May 22, 2020).
  20. Pocket Guide 2020 from the United States Anti-Doping Agency. usada.org (accessed May 24, 2020).
  21. Br J Sports Med. 2005;39(4):241-244. doi:10.1136/bjsm.2004.016303. Kaufman KR. Modafinil in Sports: Ethical Considerations.
  22. Drug Testing Program for the 2019 Reebok Crossfit Games. media.crossfit.com (accessed May 26, 2020).
  23. Why are drug testing just now being enforced in eSports? The date is May 20, 2020. esports-news.co.uk
  24. Anti-Doping Rules for International Federations based on Wada’s Models of Best Practice for International Federations and the World Anti-Doping Code The date is May 25, 2020. handbook.fide.com
  25. CG Gurtman, JH Broadbear, and JR Redman. Modafinil’s effects on simulator driving and self-evaluation of driving after sleep loss. 881–692 in Hum Psychopharmacol. doi:10.1002/hup.983

  26. Can CMV drivers get their licenses while using Provigil (Modafinil)? fmcsa.dot.gov (accessed May 26, 2020).

  27. Medications. dotphysicaldoctor.com, retrieved May 25, 2020

 

 

Modafinil is a drug that can be detected in urine for up to 10 days. For most people, this is enough time to pass a drug test. However, it’s important to note that the length of time varies depending on the person and specific circumstances. Reference: how long can modafinil be detected in urine.

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Michael Walshinaldo