cetirizine, Zyrtec, Zyrtec Allergy, Zyrtec Hives (cont.)
Omudhome Ogbru, PharmD
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:
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 15-30 C (59- 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.
SIDE EFFECTS: Sleepiness occurs in 14% of patients. Dry mouth, nausea, headache, fatigue, jitteriness and sore throat are infrequently reported with cetirizine. Allergic reactions, seizures, fainting, and low blood pressure occur rarely.
Reference: FDA Prescribing Information
Last Editorial Review: 2/3/2012
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