Compare Flonase vs. Rhinocort Aqua

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

Flonase
(Fluticasone)

Rhinocort Aqua
(Budesonide)

Relieves allergy symptoms. Flonase (Fluticasone) is a good first-choice medicine for treating a runny or stuffy nose caused by allergies, and it's cheaper than some alternatives.Relieves nasal allergy symptoms. Rhinocort Aqua (Budesonide) is a steroid nasal spray that works best when used regularly for your nasal allergy symptoms.
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Reviews & ratings
Button Group. All currently active
Button Group. All currently active
5.048808172531214Flonase
Reviews for Flonase (Fluticasone)
72%
of people say Flonase (Fluticasone) is worth it
43%
say it works well
7%
say it's a big hassle

Not enough reviews for this drug. Help someone out, leave a review!

Side effects
FlonaseRhinocort Aqua
  • Asthma symptoms 4%
  • Nausea/vomiting 3%
  • Nosebleed 2%
  • Headache 1%
  • Cough 1%
  • Sore throat 1%
More Flonase side effects »
  • Nosebleed 3%
  • Sore throat 1%
  • Bronchospasm 1%
More Rhinocort Aqua side effects »
How it works
FlonaseRhinocort Aqua
Flonase (Fluticasone) is a nasal steroid. It works directly in your nose to reduce swelling and inflammation caused by allergies.Rhinocort Aqua (Budesonide) is a steroid nasal spray that works directly in your nose to reduce swelling and allergy symptoms.
Type of medication
FlonaseRhinocort Aqua
Anti-inflammatory
Corticosteroid
Prescription or OTC
CorticosteroidPrescription only
Available as
FlonaseRhinocort Aqua
  • Nasal spray
  • Nasal spray
Used for (click to learn more)
FlonaseRhinocort Aqua
Risk factors for serious side effects
FlonaseRhinocort Aqua
  • Switching from oral or injectable steroids to inhaled, especially if used long term
  • Using other inhaled steroids with Flonase (Fluticasone)
    • Long-term use
    • Taking more than recommended dose
    • Switching from oral or injectable steroids to inhaled, especially if used long term
    • Using other inhaled steroids with Flonase (Fluticasone)
    • Long-term use
    • Exposure to immunizable diseases (chickenpox and measles)
    • Exposure to tuberculosis
    • Surgery or trauma to the nose or sinuses
    • Long-term use
    Detailed Flonase (Fluticasone) risks & warnings »
    • Long-term use
    • Surgery or trauma to the nose or sinuses
    • Long-term use
    • Untreated infections
    • Long-term use
    • Long-term use
    • Long-term use
    • Taking more than recommended dose
    Detailed Rhinocort Aqua (Budesonide) risks & warnings »
    Pregnancy category
    FlonaseRhinocort Aqua
    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
    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
    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
    No specific kidneys and liver-related info.No specific kidneys and liver-related info.
    Sex
    No specific sex-related info.No specific sex-related info.
    Sleep
    No specific sleep-related info.
    • Doesn't make you drowsy or dizzy.
    Weight
    No specific weight-related info.No specific weight-related info.
    Upsides and benefits
    FlonaseRhinocort Aqua
    • First-choice medication for treating runny and stuffy noses caused by allergies. It works by reducing inflammation in the nose.
    • Because it's used directly where the inflammation is happening, it has fewer side effects than oral steroids do and has a lower chance of causing withdrawal symptoms once the medication is stopped.
    • Can be used as needed to help control symptoms in people age 13 years or older.
    • Available as a generic medication.
    • Rhinocort Aqua (Budesonide) lowers the number of nasal symptoms you'll get during allergy season.
    • Most people don't have many side effects since it works in the nose and doesn't affect the rest of your body.
    • Doesn't make you drowsy or dizzy.
    Downsides and risks
    FlonaseRhinocort Aqua
    • Flonase (Fluticasone) doesn't have a counter on it, so it can be hard to remember how many sprays are left (each bottle has 120 sprays).
    • Needs to be primed (pressed/pumped until a fine spray appears) up to six times prior to using it for the first time, or if you haven't used it in 2 weeks.
    • Since the medicine in Flonase (Fluticasone) is a steroid, it can slow down your healing process if you've hurt your nose or had nose surgery.
    • Needs to be used everyday to work, so it can't be used as needed.
    • Can hace an unpleasant smell or taste.
    • It's good for 120 sprays, but there isn't a counter to help you keep track of sprays.
    • Can't be used in kids younger than age 6 years.
    • Need a prescription to get Rhinocort Aqua (Budesonide).
    Tips from our pharmacists for people taking the medication
    FlonaseRhinocort Aqua
    • It can take several days for Flonase (Fluticasone) to start working fully.
    • Don't take more of it than was prescribed for you.
    • Blow your nose before using Flonase (Fluticasone).
    • Can cause thrush (a fungal infection) inside the nose and throat.
    • Can also cause a headache, sore throat, or nosebleeds.
    • Works best if used everyday. It takes about one week to start seeing the best results.
    • Check with your doctor or pharmacist to make sure you know how to use this nose spray correctly.
    • Shake the spray gently and clear your nose before each use.
    • Before using it for the first time or if you haven't used it in 2 days, prime the spray pump until you see a fine mist.
    • Breathe in slowly as you're spraying and tilt your head back slightly after spraying. Wait 15 minutes before blowing your nose if needed.
    • Some people get minor nose irritation, nosebleeds, sore throat, or headaches after using it.
    Learn more
    More about FlonaseSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
    More about Rhinocort AquaSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert