Understanding and controlling your respiratory allergies

Cetirizine syrup

Pronunciation

Generic Name: cetirizine (se-TIR-i-zeen)
Brand Name: Zyrtec

Cetirizine syrup is used for:

Preventing or treating symptoms of hay fever and other upper respiratory allergies such as stuffy nose, runny nose, sneezing, itching of the nose and throat, and itchy, watery eyes. It is also used for preventing or treating chronic hives. It may also be used for other conditions as determined by your doctor.

Cetirizine syrup is an antihistamine. It works by blocking the action of histamine, which reduces the symptoms of an allergic reaction.

Do NOT use cetirizine syrup if:

  • you are allergic to any ingredient in cetirizine syrup or to hydroxyzine

Contact your doctor or health care provider right away if any of these apply to you.

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Before using cetirizine syrup:

Some medical conditions may interact with cetirizine syrup. Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you have any medical conditions, especially if any of the following apply to you:

  • if you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or are breast-feeding
  • if you are taking any prescription or nonprescription medicine, herbal preparation, or dietary supplement
  • if you have allergies to medicines, foods, or other substances
  • if you have kidney or liver problems, or you are receiving dialysis

Some MEDICINES MAY INTERACT with cetirizine syrup. Tell your health care provider if you are taking any other medicines, especially any of the following:

Theophylline because it may increase the risk of cetirizine syrup's side effects

How to use cetirizine syrup:

Use cetirizine syrup as directed by your doctor. Check the label on the medicine for exact dosing instructions.

  • Take cetirizine syrup by mouth with or without food.
  • Use a measuring device marked for medicine dosing. Ask your pharmacist for help if you are unsure of how to measure your dose.
  • If you miss a dose of cetirizine syrup, take it as soon as possible. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not take 2 doses at once.

Ask your health care provider any questions you may have about how to use cetirizine syrup.

Important safety information:

  • Cetirizine syrup may cause drowsiness or dizziness. These effects may be worse if you take it with alcohol or certain medicines. Use cetirizine syrup with caution. Do not drive or perform other possibly unsafe tasks until you know how you react to it.
  • Do not drink alcohol or use medicines that may cause drowsiness (eg, sleep aids, muscle relaxers) while you are using cetirizine syrup; it may add to their effects. Ask your pharmacist if you have questions about which medicines may cause drowsiness.
  • Cetirizine syrup may cause you to become sunburned more easily. Avoid the sun, sunlamps, or tanning booths until you know how you react to cetirizine syrup. Use a sunscreen or wear protective clothing if you must be outside for more than a short time.
  • Cetirizine syrup may interfere with skin allergy tests. If you are scheduled for a skin test, talk to your doctor. You may need to stop taking cetirizine syrup for a few days before the tests.
  • Use cetirizine syrup with caution in the ELDERLY; they may be more sensitive to its effects.
  • Caution is advised when using cetirizine syrup in CHILDREN; they may be more sensitive to its effects, especially stomach pain and trouble sleeping.
  • Cetirizine syrup should be used with extreme caution in CHILDREN younger than 6 months old; safety and effectiveness in these children have not been confirmed.
  • PREGNANCY and BREAST-FEEDING: It is not known if cetirizine syrup can cause harm to the fetus. If you become pregnant, contact your doctor. You will need to discuss the benefits and risks of using cetirizine syrup while you are pregnant. Cetirizine syrup is found in breast milk. Do not breast-feed while taking cetirizine syrup.

Possible side effects of cetirizine syrup:

All medicines may cause side effects, but many people have no, or minor, side effects. Check with your doctor if any of these most COMMON side effects persist or become bothersome:

Drowsiness; dry mouth; stomach pain (in children); tiredness; trouble sleeping (in children).

Seek medical attention right away if any of these SEVERE side effects occur:

Severe allergic reactions (rash; hives; itching; difficulty breathing; tightness in the chest; swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue; unusual hoarseness); dark urine; fainting; fast or irregular heartbeat; mental or mood changes; persistent fatigue; seizures; severe dizziness; unusual bruising or bleeding; yellowing of eyes or skin.

This is not a complete list of all side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, contact your health care provider. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. To report side effects to the appropriate agency, please read the Guide to Reporting Problems to FDA.

If OVERDOSE is suspected:

Contact 1-800-222-1222 (the American Association of Poison Control Centers), your local poison control center, or emergency room immediately. Symptoms may include irritability; restlessness; severe drowsiness.

Proper storage of cetirizine syrup:

Store cetirizine syrup at 77 degrees F ( 25 degrees C). Brief storage at temperatures between 59 and 86 degrees F (15 and 30 degrees C) is permitted. Store away from heat, moisture, and light. Cetirizine syrup may be refrigerated at 36 to 46 degrees F (2 to 8 degrees C). Do not store in the bathroom. Keep cetirizine syrup out of the reach of children and away from pets.

General information:

  • If you have any questions about cetirizine syrup, please talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
  • Cetirizine syrup is to be used only by the patient for whom it is prescribed. Do not share it with other people.
  • If your symptoms do not improve or if they become worse, check with your doctor.
  • Check with your pharmacist about how to dispose of unused medicine.

This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take cetirizine syrup or any other medicine. Only your health care provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for you. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about cetirizine syrup. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to cetirizine syrup. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from your health care provider. You must talk with your healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using cetirizine syrup.

Issue Date: March 5, 2014
Database Edition 14.1.1.003
Copyright © 2014 Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc.

Disclaimer: This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take this medicine or any other medicine. Only your health care provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for you. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about this medicine. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to this medicine. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from your health care provider. You must talk with your healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using this medicine.

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