Zyrtec

By Medically reviewed by Hello Doktor Medical Panel

Uses

What is Zyrtec® (cetirizine) used for?

Zyrtec® is in a class of medications called antihistamines. It works by blocking the action of histamine, a substance in the body that causes allergic symptoms.

Zyrtec® is used to temporarily relieve the symptoms of hay fever (allergy to pollen, dust, or other substances in the air) and allergy to other substances (such as dust mites, animal dander, cockroaches, and molds). These symptoms include sneezing; runny nose; itchy, red, watery eyes; and itchy nose or throat.

Zyrtec® is also used to treat itching and redness caused by hives. However, Zyrtec® does not prevent hives or other allergic skin reactions.

How should I take Zyrtec® (cetirizine)?

Zyrtec® comes as a tablet, a chewable tablet, an extended-release tablet, and a syrup (liquid) to take by mouth. It is usually taken once a day with or without food. Take Zyrtec® at around the same time every day. Follow the directions on your package label carefully, and ask your doctor or pharmacist to explain any part you do not understand. Take Zyrtec® exactly as directed. Do not take more or less of it or take it more often than directed on the package label or as recommended by your doctor.

Do not use Zyrtec® to treat hives that are bruised or blistered, that are an unusual color, or that do not itch. Call your doctor if you have these types of hives.

Stop taking Zyrtec® and call your doctor if your hives do not improve during the first 3 days of your treatment or if your hives last longer than 6 weeks. If you do not know the cause of your hives, call your doctor.

How do I store Zyrtec® (cetirizine)?

Zyrtec® is best stored at room temperature away from direct light and moisture. To prevent drug damage, you should not store Zyrtec® in the bathroom or the freezer. There may be different brands of Zyrtec® that may have different storage needs. It is important to always check the product package for instructions on storage, or ask your pharmacist. For safety, you should keep all medicines away from children and pets.

You should not flush Zyrtec® down the toilet or pour them into a drain unless instructed to do so. It is important to properly discard this product when it is expired or no longer needed. Consult your pharmacist for more details about how to safely discard your product.

Precautions & warnings

What should I know before using Zyrtec® (cetirizine)?

Before using this drug, tell your doctor if:

  • You are pregnant or breastfeeding. This is because, while you are expecting or feeding a baby, you should only take medicines on the recommendation of a doctor.
  • You are taking any other medicines. This includes any medicines you are taking which are available to buy without a prescription, such as herbal and complementary medicines.
  • You have allergy with any of active or inactive ingredients of Zyrtec® or other medications.
  • You have any other illnesses, disorders, or medical conditions.

Zyrtec® may make you drowsy. Do not drive a car or operate machinery until you know how this medication affects you.

Alcohol can add to the drowsiness caused by this medication. Avoid drinking alcoholic beverages while taking this medication.

Is it safe during pregnancy or breastfeeding?

There are no adequate studies in women for determining risk when using Zyrtec® during pregnancy or while breastfeeding. Please always consult with your doctor to weigh the potential benefits and risks before taking Zyrtec®. Zyrtec® is pregnancy risk category B, according to the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

FDA pregnancy risk category reference below:

  • A=No risk
  • B=No risk in some studies
  • C=There may be some risk
  • D=Positive evidence of risk
  • X=Contraindicated
  • N=Unknown

Side effects

What side effects can occur from Zyrtec® (cetirizine)?

Zyrtec® may cause side effects. Tell your doctor if any of these symptoms are severe or do not go away:

  • Drowsiness
  • Excessive tiredness
  • Dry mouth
  • Stomach pain
  • Diarrhea
  • Vomiting

Not everyone experiences these side effects. There may be some side effects not listed above. If you have any concerns about a side-effect, please consult your doctor or pharmacist.

Interactions

What drugs may interact with Zyrtec® (cetirizine)?

Zyrtec® may interact with other drugs that you are currently taking, which can change how your drug works or increase your risk for serious side effects. To avoid any potential drug interactions, you should keep a list of all the drugs you are using (including prescription drugs, nonprescription drugs, and herbal products) and share it with your doctor and pharmacist. For your safety, do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any drugs without your doctor’s approval.

Products may interact with this drug, including:

  • Aspirin Low Strength (aspirin)
  • Cymbalta (duloxetine)
  • Fish Oil (omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids)
  • Lyrica (pregabalin)
  • Nexium (esomeprazole)
  • ProAir HFA (albuterol)
  • Singulair (montelukast)
  • Vitamin B12 (cyanocobalamin)

Does food or alcohol interact with Zyrtec® (cetirizine)?

Zyrtec® may interact with food or alcohol by altering the way the drug works or increase the risk for serious side effects. Please discuss with your doctor or pharmacist any potential food or alcohol interactions before using this drug.

What health conditions may interact with Zyrtec® (cetirizine)?

Zyrtec® may interact with your health condition. This interaction may worsen your health condition or alter the way the drug works. It is important to always let your doctor and pharmacist know all the health conditions you currently have.

These health conditions are:

  • Kidney disease
  • Liver disease

Dosage

The information provided is not a substitute for any medical advice. You should ALWAYS consult with your doctor or pharmacist before using Zyrtec® (cetirizine).

What is the dose of Zyrtec® (cetirizine) for an adult?

One 10 mg capsule once daily; do not take more than one 10 mg capsule in 24 hours. A 5 mg product may be appropriate for less severe symptoms.

What is the dose of Zyrtec® (cetirizine) for a child?

Children 6 years and over:

One 10 mg capsule once daily; do not take more than one 10 mg capsule in 24 hours. A 5 mg product may be appropriate for less severe symptoms.

2 to 5 years old:

2,5 mg orally once a day, may be increased to 5mg/day in 1 to 2 divided doses.

6 months to 2 years:

2.5 mg orally once a day, 12 months and older may be increased to 2.5 mg orally twice a day.

How is Zyrtec® (cetirizine) available?

Zyrtec® is available in the following dosage forms and strengths:

  • Tablet 10mg

What should I do in case of an emergency or overdose?

In case of an emergency or an overdose, call your local emergency services or go to your nearest emergency room.

What should I do if I miss a dose?

If you miss a dose of Zyrtec®, take it as soon as possible. However, if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and take your regular dose as scheduled. Do not take a double dose.

Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

msBahasa Malaysia

Share now :

Review Date: May 25, 2017 | Last Modified: December 19, 2019

Sources
You might also like