cetirizine, Zyrtec, Zyrtec Allergy, Zyrtec Hives

  • Pharmacy Author:
    Omudhome Ogbru, PharmD

    Dr. Ogbru received his Doctorate in Pharmacy from the University of the Pacific School of Pharmacy in 1995. He completed a Pharmacy Practice Residency at the University of Arizona/University Medical Center in 1996. He was a Professor of Pharmacy Practice and a Regional Clerkship Coordinator for the University of the Pacific School of Pharmacy from 1996-99.

  • Medical and Pharmacy Editor: Jay W. Marks, MD
    Jay W. Marks, MD

    Jay W. Marks, MD

    Jay W. Marks, MD, is a board-certified internist and gastroenterologist. He graduated from Yale University School of Medicine and trained in internal medicine and gastroenterology at UCLA/Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles.

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SIDE EFFECTS: Side effects that have been reported with cetirizine include:

Other important but rare side effects include:

PRESCRIPTION: Yes, OTC (yes)

GENERIC AVAILABLE: Yes

PREPARATIONS: Tablets: 5 and 10 mg. Tablets (Chewable or orally disintegrating): 10 mg. Syrup: 5 mg/5 ml.

STORAGE: Cetirizine should be stored in a dry place at 15 C to 30 C (59 F to 86 F).

DOSING: The recommended dose is 5 to 10 mg daily depending on the severity of symptoms.

DRUG INTERACTIONS: Theophylline (Theo-Dur, Respbid, Slo-Bid, Theo-24, Theolair, Uniphyl, Slo-Phyllin)reduces the breakdown of cetirizine by 16% and can increase blood levels of cetirizine. Drugs that cause drowsiness may add to drowsiness resulting from cetirizine.

PREGNANCY: Cetirizine has not been adequately evaluated in pregnant women. Available evidence suggests that risk to the developing fetus is low.

NURSING MOTHERS: Cetirizine is excreted in human breast milk.

Medically reviewed by Eni Williams, PharmD

Reference: FDA Prescribing Information

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 9/10/2015

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