Compare Allegra vs. Zyrtec D

Head-to-head comparisons of medication uses, side effects, ratings, and more.

Allegra
(Fexofenadine)

Zyrtec D
(Cetirizine / Pseudoephedrine)

Treats allergy symptoms. Allegra (Fexofenadine) relieves allergy symptoms without making you feel drowsy.Relieves congestion and allergy symptoms. Zyrtec D (Cetirizine / Pseudoephedrine) relieves allergies and congestion without causing daytime sleepiness. It can keep you up at night if you take it too close to bedtime.
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Reviews & ratings
Button Group. All currently active
Button Group. All currently active
5.2727272727272725Allegra
Reviews for Allegra (Fexofenadine)
77%
of people say Allegra (Fexofenadine) is worth it
59%
say it works well
0%
say it's a big hassle
Reviews for Zyrtec D (Cetirizine / Pseudoephedrine)
75%
2% vs. Allegra (Fexofenadine)
43%
16% vs. Allegra (Fexofenadine)
9%
9% vs. Allegra (Fexofenadine)
Side effects
AllegraZyrtec D
  • Vomiting 3%
  • Headache 3%
  • Cough 3%
  • Back pain 2%
  • Ear, nose, or throat infection 2%
  • Diarrhea 1%
  • Fever 1%
  • Runny nose 1%
  • Dizziness 1%
  • Stomach discomfort 1%
More Allegra side effects »

We haven’t found good data for Zyrtec D side effects.

FDA side effect reports for Zyrtec D »
How it works
AllegraZyrtec D
Allegra (Fexofenadine) is an antihistamine. It blocks histamine, a chemical that causes congestion, itching, and other allergic reactions.Zyrtec D (Cetirizine / Pseudoephedrine) is a combination medicine for allergies. Cetirizine (an antihistamine) prevents allergy symptoms like runny nose, sneezing, and itchy eyes or skin. Pseudoephedrine (a decongestant) clears your sinuses.
Type of medication
AllegraZyrtec D
Antihistamine
2nd generation
Prescription or OTC
Antihistamine
2nd generation
DecongestantPrescription or OTC
Available as
AllegraZyrtec D
  • Pill
  • Dissolving tablet
  • Liquid
  • Extended release
Used for (click to learn more)
AllegraZyrtec D
Risk factors for serious side effects
AllegraZyrtec D
  • Taking with alcohol
  • Taking other medicines that make you less alert
  • History of phenylketonuria (PKU)
Detailed Allegra (Fexofenadine) risks & warnings »
  • History of high blood pressure
  • History of heart problems
  • Age 65 or older
  • History of seizure
  • Women of childbearing age
    • Age 65 years or older
    • Taking with alcohol
    • Taking other medicines that make you less alert
    • Current kidney disease
    • Current liver disease
    Detailed Zyrtec D (Cetirizine / Pseudoephedrine) risks & warnings »
    Pregnancy category
    AllegraZyrtec D
    CFDA pregnancy category (Weigh risks vs. benefits)

    Research studies with animals found harmful effects on unborn babies. It hasn’t been properly studied in humans. The benefits might outweigh the risks even if you’re pregnant. Talk with your doctor.

    See the FDA package insert
    NFDA pregnancy category (Unknown)

    The FDA hasn’t classified this medicine’s effects on unborn babies. Talk with your doctor about this medicine if you’re pregnant or planning on it.

    See the FDA package insert
    Alcohol
    No specific alcohol-related info.No specific alcohol-related info.
    Food
    No specific food-related info.No specific food-related info.
    Kidneys and liver
    • The dose needs to be adjusted for people with kidney problems.
    • People with kidney or liver disease may need to take a lower dose of Zyrtec D (Cetirizine / Pseudoephedrine) to prevent overdose. Talk with your doctor to be sure you are using the correct dose.
    Sex
    No specific sex-related info.No specific sex-related info.
    Sleep
    • Won't make you feel drowsy like some antihistamine medicines.
    • The antihistamine (Cetirizine) can cause more drowsiness than similar antihistamines, like Allegra D (which contains Fexofenadine) and Claritin D (which contains Loratadine).
    • You might not sleep as well due to Pseudoephedrine's effects and you can also have strange dreams while taking it.
    • The antihistamine (Cetirizine) in Zyrtec D (Cetirizine / Pseudoephedrine) causes less drowsiness than other medications like Benadryl.
    • It's better to take Zyrtec D (Cetirizine / Pseudoephedrine) early in the morning or when you wake up, otherwise you can have trouble sleeping later.
    • People age 65 and older have a higher risk of troublesome side effects from taking antihistamine medications like Zyrtec D (Cetirizine / Pseudoephedrine). Watch out for changes in vision, severe dry mouth, trouble urinating, or constipation. Also, feelings of drowsiness may leave you "unsteady" on your feet. This can make you more likely to fall causing broken bones or other serious injuries. Talk with your doctor before using Zyrtec D (Cetirizine / Pseudoephedrine) and stop using it if you have side effects.
    Weight
    No specific weight-related info.No specific weight-related info.
    Upsides and benefits
    AllegraZyrtec D
    • Relieves allergy symptoms, like sneezing, runny nose, and itching.
    • Approved to be used in kids and adults age 6 months and older.
    • Won't make you feel drowsy like some antihistamine medicines.
    • Available over-the-counter without a prescription.
    • Comes in many forms, such as a tablet, liquid, or quick-dissolving tablet.
    • It's okay to take with most other medications since it has very few interactions.
    • The antihistamine (Cetirizine) in Zyrtec D (Cetirizine / Pseudoephedrine) causes less drowsiness than other medications like Benadryl.
    • The decongestant (Pseudoephedrine) in Zyrtec D (Cetirizine / Pseudoephedrine) is stronger than other decongestants. It can also help relieve congestion-related headaches and ear pressure.
    • The stimulant effects of Pseudoephedrine can give you some extra energy during the day.
    • Doesn't give you rebound congestion (worse congestion symptoms after you stop taking the medicine) like decongestant nose sprays can.
    • It's available without a prescription, unlike other strong allergy medicines.
    Downsides and risks
    AllegraZyrtec D
    • For some people, the effects Allegra (Fexofenadine) has on allergies will wear off over time.
    • May not work as well as the first-generation antihistamines, like diphenhydramine (Benadryl).
    • The dose needs to be adjusted for people with kidney problems.
    • You can have more side effects when using combination pills than when using single-ingredient medications.
    • The antihistamine (Cetirizine) can cause more drowsiness than similar antihistamines, like Allegra D (which contains Fexofenadine) and Claritin D (which contains Loratadine).
    • The decongestant (Pseudoephedrine) can make your heart race or give you anxious or restless feelings.
    • You might not sleep as well due to Pseudoephedrine's effects and you can also have strange dreams while taking it.
    • Pseudoephedrine can raise your blood pressure, so don't take it if you have high blood pressure or other heart conditions.
    • Although you don't need a prescription, you do need to show a photo ID to buy this from behind the pharmacy counter.
    Tips from our pharmacists for people taking the medication
    AllegraZyrtec D
    • Starts working in 1 to 2 hours depending on what dosage form you're taking.
    • Works best when taken regularly, even before symptoms are expected to appear.
    • Can make you feel dizzy or sleepy, so you can take it at bedtime.
    • Follow age-specific dosing and don't take more than recommended.
    • If symptoms get worse or you need to use it for more than a few weeks, talk with your doctor.
    • Starts working in 30 minutes.
    • You need to show an ID to buy Zyrtec D (Cetirizine / Pseudoephedrine) in the drugstore because it contains Pseudoephedrine.
    • Don't cut, crush, or chew tablets; swallow them whole.
    • It's better to take Zyrtec D (Cetirizine / Pseudoephedrine) early in the morning or when you wake up, otherwise you can have trouble sleeping later.
    • Can cause an irregular or fast heartbeat, and can raise your blood pressure.
    • If you need to use it for more than a few weeks, talk with your doctor since a different medication might work better for you.
    Learn more
    More about AllegraSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
    More about Zyrtec DSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert