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Read all of this leaflet carefully because it contains important
information for you.
• This medicine is available without prescription. However, you still need
to take it carefully to get the best results from it.

• Keep this leaflet. You may need to read it again
• Ask your pharmacist if you need more information or advice.
• You must contact a doctor if your symptoms worsen or do not improve

clearance below 10 ml/min);

• if you are known to be hypersensitive to the active substance of Zirtek, to
any of its excipients (other constituents), to hydroxyzine or to any
piperazine derivatives (closely related active substances of other

You should not take Zirtek 10 mg tablets:
• if you have rare hereditary problems of galactose intolerance, the Lapp

and driving capabilities after taking Zirtek at the recommended dose.
You should closely observe your response to the drug after you have taken
Zirtek if you are intending to drive, engage in potentially hazardous
activities or operate machinery.
You should not exceed the recommended dose.

This medicine contains lactose

after 3 days.

If any of the above applies to you talk to your pharmacist.

This medicine contains lactose. If you have been told by your doctor that
you have an intolerance to some sugars, contact your doctor before taking
these tablets.

listed in this leaflet, please tell your doctor or pharmacist.

Take special care with Zirtek
• If you are a patient with renal insufficiency, please ask your doctor for


• If any of the side effects get serious, or if you notice any side effects not

Zirtek Allergy
10 mg film-coated tablets
Cetirizine dihydrochloride
In this leaflet:

1. What Zirtek is and what it is used for
2. Before you take Zirtek
3. How to take Zirtek
4. Possible side effects
5. How to store Zirtek
6. Further information.

Cetirizine dihydrochloride is the active ingredient of Zirtek.
Zirtek is an antiallergic medicine.

In adults and children aged 6 years and above, Zirtek is used
• for the relief of nasal and ocular symptoms of seasonal and perennial

allergic rhinitis (hayfever and year-round allergies affecting the nose and
• for the relief of chronic nettle rash (chronic idiopathic urticaria).


Do not take Zirtek:
• if you have a severe kidney disease (severe renal failure with creatinine

lactase deficiency or glucose-galactose malabsorption.

advice; if necessary, you will take a lower dose. The new dose will be
determined by your doctor.
• If you are an epileptic patient or a patient at risk of convulsions, you
should ask your doctor for advice.
No clinically significant interactions have been observed between alcohol
(at the blood level of 0.5 g/l corresponding to one glass of wine) and
cetirizine used at the recommended doses. However, there are no data
available on the safety when higher doses of cetirizine and alcohol are taken
together. Therefore, as it is the case with all antihistamines, it is
recommended to avoid taking Zirtek with alcohol.
If you are scheduled for allergy testing, ask your doctor if you should stop
taking Zirtek for several days before testing. This medicine may affect your
allergy test results.

Taking other medicines

Please tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are taking or have recently taken
any other medicines, including medicines obtained without a prescription.

Taking Zirtek Allergy with food and drink

Food does not affect absorption of Zirtek.
Avoid alcoholic drink while you are taking this medicine.

These guidelines apply unless your doctor has given you different
instructions on how to use Zirtek. Please follow these instructions, otherwise
Zirtek may not be fully effective.
Tablets need to be swallowed with a glass of liquid.

Adults and adolescents aged 12 years and over:
10 mg once daily as 1 tablet.

Children aged 6 to 12 years:

5 mg twice daily as half a tablet twice daily.

Patients with moderate to severe kidney impairment

Patients with moderate kidney impairment are recommended to take 5 mg
once daily.
If you feel that the effect of Zirtek is too weak or too strong, please consult
your doctor.

Duration of treatment

The duration of the treatment depends on the type, duration and course of
your complaints. Please ask your pharmacist for advice.

If you take more Zirtek Allergy than you should

Ask your doctor or pharmacist for advice before taking any medicine.
As with other drugs, use of Zirtek should be avoided in pregnant women.
Accidental use of the drug by a pregnant woman should not produce any
harmful effects on the foetus. Nevertheless, the medicine should only be
administered if necessary and after medical advice.

If you think you have taken an overdose of Zirtek please inform your doctor.
Your doctor will then decide what measures, if any, should be taken.
After an overdose, the side effects described below may occur with
increased intensity. Adverse effects such as confusion, diarrhoea, dizziness,
tiredness, headache, ailing, dilating of pupil, itching, restlessness, sedation,
somnolence, stupor, abnormal rapid heart rate, tremors and urinary retention
have been reported.

Driving and using machines

If you forget to take a tablet


Clinical studies have produced no evidence of impaired attention, alertness

Do not take a double dose to make up for forgotten dose.

If you stop taking Zirtek

If you have any other questions about taking this medicine, ask your

• Convulsions
• Weight increased
• Aggression, confusion, depression, hallucination (hearing or seeing


• Urticaria (hives).

Like all medicines Zirtek Allergy can cause side effects, although not
everybody gets them.
The following side effect is very rare, but you must stop taking the
tablets and speak to your doctor straight away if you notice them
• Allergic reactions, including severe reactions and angioedema (serious
allergic reaction which cause swelling of the face and throat).
These reactions may start soon after you first take the medicine, or it
might start later.
The frequency of possible side effects listed below is defined using the
following convention:
Common (affects 1 to 10 patients in 100)
Uncommon (affects 1 to 10 patients in 1000)
Rare (affects 1 to 10 patients in 10,000)
Very rare (affects less than 1 patient in 10,000)
Not known (frequency cannot be estimated from available data)
The following side effects have also been reported.
Common side effects (affects less than 1 in 10 people)
• Tiredness, feeling sleepy
• Headache
• Dry mouth
• Nausea
• Diarrhoea
• Dizziness
• Sore throat
• Cold-like symptoms of the nose (children only).
Uncommon side effects (affects less than 1 in 100 people)
• Itching and rash
• Asthenia (extreme fatigue) or generally unwell
• Tingling in the hands and feet
• Feeling agitated
• Pain in the abdomen.
Rare side effects (affects less than 1 in 1000 people)
• Tachycardia (heart beating too fast)
• Oedema (generalised swelling due to water retention)
• Abnormal liver function test results (your doctor will know what to do)

things), sleeplessness

Very rare side effects (affects less than 1 in 10,000 people)
• Blurred vision, difficulty focussing
• Oculogyration (eyes having uncontrolled circular movements)
• Low level of blood platelets causing unusual bleeding or bruising
• Bad taste in the mouth
• Tremor, tics (habit spasm)
• Involuntary movements and/or jerking of the limbs
• Muscle spasms in the neck and shoulders
• Swelling of the skin particularly around the face or throat
• Fainting
• A recurring rash
• Abnormal elimination of urine (bedwetting, pain and/or difficulty passing
Not known frequency of side effects
• Memory loss and forgetfulness.
If you develop one of the side effects described above, please inform
your doctor or pharmacist. At the first signs of a hypersensitivity
reaction, stop taking Zirtek. Your doctor will then assess the severity
and decide on any further measures that may be necessary.
If you think you have any side effects not mentioned in this leaflet,
please inform your doctor or pharmacist.

What Zirtek Allergy looks like

The tablets are small white oblong film-coated tablets, each scored and
bearing the logo Y/Y. Your medicine is supplied in blister packs of 1, 4, 5, 7,
10, 14, 15, 20, 21, 30, 40, 45, 50, 60, 90, 100 or 100 (10x10) tablets. Not all
pack sizes will be marketed.

Marketing Authorisation Holder and Manufacturer

UCB Pharma Ltd, 208 Bath Road, Slough, Berkshire, SL1 3WE, United
This leaflet was last updated July 2011
If this leaflet is difficult to see or read or you would like it in a different
format, please contact UCB Pharma Ltd, UK


Keep out of the reach and sight of children. Do not use Zirtek after the
expiry date which is stated on the box and blister. This medicine does not
require any special storage conditions.

What Zirtek Allergy contains

The active substance of Zirtek is cetirizine dihydrochloride One film-coated
tablet contains 10 mg certirizine dihydrochloride. The other ingredients are
microcrystalline cellulose, lactose monohydrate, macrogol 400, and
magnesium stearate, hypromellose, colloidal silicon dioxide, titanium
dioxide (E171).


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Source: Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency

Disclaimer: Every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided here is accurate, up-to-date and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. Drug information contained herein may be time sensitive. This information has been compiled for use by healthcare practitioners and consumers in the United States. The absence of a warning for a given drug or combination thereof in no way should be construed to indicate that the drug or combination is safe, effective or appropriate for any given patient. If you have questions about the substances you are taking, check with your doctor, nurse or pharmacist.