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Pronunciation:  lor AH ta deen
Generic:  loratadine
Brand:  Alavert, Claritin, Claritin Reditab.

What is loratadine?

Loratadine is an antihistamine. Antihistamines prevent sneezing, runny nose, itching and watering of the eyes, and other allergic symptoms.

Loratadine is used to treat allergies, hives (urticaria), and other allergic inflammatory conditions.

Loratadine may also be used for purposes other than those listed in this medication guide.

How should I take loratadine?

Take loratadine exactly as directed by your doctor. If you do not understand these instructions, ask your pharmacist, nurse, or doctor to explain them to you.

Take each dose with a full glass (8 ounces) of water.

Do not crush, chew, or break the regular Claritin tablets. Swallow them whole.

Place the loratadine rapidly-disintegrating-tablets (Claritin Reditabs, Alavert) on the tongue and allow them to dissolve. The tablet will disintegrate rapidly. Swallow with or without water.

To ensure the correct dose, measure the syrup form of loratadine with a dose-measuring spoon or cup, not with a regular table spoon. If you do not have a dose-measuring device, ask your pharmacist for one.

Loratadine is usually taken once a day. Follow your doctors instructions.

Never take more of this medication than directed. If your symptoms do not improve, talk to your doctor.

Store loratadine at room temperature away from moisture and heat. Use the loratadine rapidly-disintegrating-tablets (Claritin Reditabs) within 6 months of opening the laminated foil pouch, and immediately upon opening the individual tablet blisters.

What are the possible side effects of loratadine?

If you experience any of the following serious side effects, stop taking loratadine and contact your doctor immediately or seek emergency medical attention.

  • an allergic reaction (difficulty breathing; closing of the throat; swelling of the lips, tongue, or face; or hives);
  • an irregular heartbeat; or
  • seizures.

Other, less serious side effects may be more likely to occur. Continue to take loratadine and talk to your doctor if you experience

  • drowsiness or dizziness;
  • headache;
  • nervousness;
  • nausea, diarrhea, or abdominal discomfort;
  • dry mouth;
  • dry skin or itchiness; or
  • discoloration of urine.

Side effects other than those listed here may also occur. Talk to your doctor about any side effect that seems unusual or that is especially bothersome.

What other drugs will affect loratadine?

There are no known interactions between loratadine and other medications. Talk to your doctor and pharmacist before taking any prescription or over-the-counter medicines, including vitamins, minerals, and herbal products, during treatment with loratadine.

What should I avoid while taking loratadine?

Use caution when driving, operating machinery, or performing other hazardous activities. Although unlikely, loratadine may cause dizziness or drowsiness. If you experience dizziness or drowsiness, avoid these activities.

What happens if I overdose?

Seek emergency medical attention if an overdose is suspected.

Symptoms of a loratadine overdose include headache, drowsiness, irregular heartbeat, nausea, and vomiting.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. However, if it is almost time for the next dose, skip the missed dose and take only the next regularly scheduled dose. Do not take a double dose of this medication.

What is the most important information I should know about loratadine?

Use caution when driving, operating machinery, or performing other hazardous activities. Although unlikely, loratadine may cause dizziness or drowsiness. If you experience dizziness or drowsiness, avoid these activities.

What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before taking loratadine?

Before taking loratadine, tell your doctor if you have

  • ever had an allergic reaction to an antihistamine;

You may not be able to take loratadine, or you may require a dosage adjustment or special monitoring during treatment if you have any of the conditions listed above.

The Alavert brand of loratadine orally-disintegrating tablets contain 8.4 mg phenylalanine per tablet. Individuals with phenylketonuria may need to monitor their intake of this additive.

Loratadine is in the FDA pregnancy category B. This means that it is not expected to be harmful to an unborn baby. Do not take loratadine without first talking to your doctor if you are pregnant or could become pregnant during treatment.

Loratadine passes into breast milk and may affect a nursing infant. Do not take loratadine without first talking to your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.

Where can I get more information?

Your pharmacist has additional information about loratadine written for health professionals that you may read.

What does my medication look like?

Loratadine is available with a prescription under the brand name Claritin. Other brand or generic formulations may also be available. Ask your pharmacist any questions you have about this medication, especially if it is new to you.

  • Alavert 10 mground, white tablets
  • Claritin 10 mground, white tablets
  • Claritin Syrup 1 mg per mLclear, colorless to light-yellow syrup
  • Claritin Reditabs 10 mground, white tablets

Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.

Every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided by Cerner Multum, Inc. ('Multum') is accurate, up-to-date, and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. Drug information contained herein may be time sensitive. Multum information has been compiled for use by healthcare practitioners and consumers in the United States and therefore Multum does not warrant that uses outside of the United States are appropriate, unless specifically indicated otherwise. Multum's drug information does not endorse drugs, diagnose patients or recommend therapy. Multum's drug information is an informational resource designed to assist licensed healthcare practitioners in caring for their patients and/or to serve consumers viewing this service as a supplement to, and not a substitute for, the expertise, skill, knowledge and judgment of healthcare practitioners. The absence of a warning for a given drug or drug combination in no way should be construed to indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective or appropriate for any given patient. Multum does not assume any responsibility for any aspect of healthcare administered with the aid of information Multum provides. The information contained herein is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. If you have questions about the drugs you are taking, check with your doctor, nurse or pharmacist.