Claritin (Loratadine) Dosage and Side Effects
The drug is often used to treat nasal allergies (allergic rhinitis) and hives (urticaria).
Warnings and Precautions
People who are allergic to the drug's active ingredient (loratadine) or any other components in the drug should not take loratadine.
Those born with the rare condition phenylketonuria should also avoid loratadine.
If you have severe kidney disease or poor liver problems, talk to your doctor before taking loratadine.
Pregnancy and Loratadine
Loratadine is a pregnancy category B drug, which means it is should not cause harm to an unborn child.
Regardless, you should tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant before taking this or any other medication.
You should also alert your physician if you are breastfeeding or plan to breastfeed. It's not recommended that breastfeeding mothers take this medication.
Common Side Effects of Loratadine
- Stomach pain
- Dry eyes, dry mouth, dry throat
- An opposite reaction in which you feel excited, jittery, or nervous, known as paradoxical CNS stimulation instead of drowsy or sleepy
Severe Side Effects of Loratadine
- Liver damage or inflammation
- Tightness in the chest or breathing tube
- Passing out or fainting
- Low platelet count (thrombocytopenia)
Interactions with this medication
Loratadine is not known to have many major drug interactions.
However, it's still important to share with your doctor and pharmacist all prescription, non-prescription, illegal, recreational, herbal, nutritional, or dietary drugs you're taking.
You should not take loratadine if you are taking Ranexa(ranolazine).
Also, before taking loratadine, first talk to your doctor if you are taking any of the following:
- Cordarone, Nexterone, or Pacerone (amiodarone)
- Prezista (darunavir)
- Sprycel (dasatinib)
Loratadine and Alcohol
Because both alcohol and loratadine may cause drowsiness, along with dry mouth and dry eyes (which may blur vision), you should avoid drinking alcohol while taking loratadine.
Loratadine and Grapefruit Juice
Loratadine and grapefruit juice are both broken down in the liver the same way, so there's a small chance of adverse effects when both are taken at the same time.
Talk to your doctor or pharmacist about drinking grapefruit juice if you are taking loratadine.
Proper Use of this medication
Loratadine comes in capsules, tablets, and as syrup. Loratadine should not be given to children under that age 6.
You should not take more than 10 milligram (mg), which is one tablet or capsule and two teaspoons of syrup a day of loratadine, unless directed by your doctor.
People who take more than the recommended 10 mg of loratadine a day are at greater risk of severe sleepiness, racing heartbeat, and headaches.
Children who take more than the recommended 10 mg of loratadine may actually start to move and behave similarly to people who have Parkinson's disease.
If you suspect an overdose, contact a poison control center or emergency room immediately.
Missed Dose of Loratadine
If you miss a dose of Loratadine, try to take it as soon as you remember.
However, if it is almost time for the next dose, skip the missed dose and resume your regular dosing schedule. Don't double up to make up for a missed dose.
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The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.