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Eliquis (apixaban) was the 93rd most commonly prescribed drug in the United States in 2017. In that year alone, there were over 8,662,640 prescriptions for this medication. Considering how popular this drug is right now, it pays to know a little bit more about this medication, including how long Eliquis stays in your system.

Basic Information

The FDA and research studies indicate the following information regarding Eliquis half-life:

Mean effective half-life: 12 hours

Time to steady-state: Between 48 hours and 72 hours

Eliquis has an oral bioavailability of approximately 50 percent in doses up to 10 mg. Food does not have any effect on this bioavailability. This medication leaves the body through urine and feces after a short time and does not accumulate.


What is the half-life of Eliquis?

The half-life of Eliquis is around 12 hours. Maximum concentrations of this medication appear 3 to 4 hours following an oral dose.

How long does Eliquis stay in your system?

Since Eliquis does not have a long half-life, it generally stays in your system for a short period of time. It has a clearance rate of around 3.3 L/hour. This medication is eliminated from the body through feces and urine. Roughly 27 percent of total clearance of Eliquis occurs through renal excretion. In fecal matter, this medication is eliminated through biliary and direct intestinal excretion.

Since Eliquis does not remain in your system long, there is little concern of having it show up on drug tests. Specific details on detection windows for these tests is not available for Eliquis. Examples of common blood tests include the following:

  • Urine drug test: This type of test checks samples of urine for certain substances, such as cocaine and alcohol. Detection windows for urine tests range from several hours to around a month, although this depends on the kinds of substances being tested for, as well as urine acidity and other factors.
  • Blood/plasma/serum drug test: These kinds of drug tests check samples of plasma, serum, or blood for opiates, cocaine, and other substances. These tests usually have a short detection window of a few days or more.
  • Hair drug test: This type of test checks samples of hair follicles for the presence of amphetamine, opiates, and other substances. The detection windows for these tests can be a few months or less.

Does Eliquis have to be taken 12 hours apart?

Eliquis is typically intended to be used twice a day. Doctors may recommend taking it 12 hours apart, since this medication has a half-life of 12 hours. Individuals should discuss daily recommended dosage times with their doctor. If a dose is missed, individuals should not take double the amount to make up for it, since taking too much at once may increase the risk of bleeding. Instead, they should take Eliquis as soon as possible and resume taking it twice a day after that.

Disclaimer: this article does not constitute or replace medical advice. If you have an emergency or a serious medical question, please contact a medical professional or call 911 immediately. To see our full medical disclaimer, visit our Terms of Use page.

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