Compare Zyrtec D vs. Rhinocort Aqua

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

Zyrtec D
(cetirizine / pseudoephedrine)

Rhinocort Aqua
(budesonide)

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.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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Prices and coupon for 60 (12 hour) tablets of cetirizine / pseudoephedrine
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Prices and coupon for 30 (1mg/2ml) ampules of budesonide
Reviews & ratings
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5.09Zyrtec D
Reviews for Zyrtec D (cetirizine / pseudoephedrine)
75%
of people (All ages) say Zyrtec D (cetirizine / pseudoephedrine) is worth it
43%
say it works well
9%
say it's a big hassle
927 reviews
Have you used Zyrtec D (cetirizine / pseudoephedrine)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it

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Have you used Rhinocort Aqua (budesonide)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
Side effects
Zyrtec DRhinocort Aqua

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

FDA side effect reports for Zyrtec D »
  • Nosebleed 3%
  • Sore throat 1%
  • Bronchospasm 1%
  • Coughing 2%
  • Nasal irritation 2%
More Rhinocort Aqua side effects »
How it works
Zyrtec DRhinocort Aqua
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.Rhinocort Aqua (Budesonide) is a steroid nasal spray that works directly in your nose to reduce swelling and allergy symptoms.
Type of medication
Zyrtec DRhinocort Aqua
Prescription or OTC
Prescription only
Available as
Zyrtec DRhinocort Aqua
  • Extended release
  • Nasal spray
Used for
Zyrtec DRhinocort Aqua
Risk factors for serious side effects
Zyrtec DRhinocort Aqua
  • 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 »
    • 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

    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.

    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.

    Price
    Zyrtec DRhinocort Aqua
    No price related info.
    • It's good for 120 sprays, but there isn't a counter to help you keep track of sprays.
    Kidneys and liver
    Zyrtec DRhinocort Aqua
    • 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.
    No kidneys and liver related info.
    Sleep
    Zyrtec DRhinocort Aqua
    • The antihistamine (Cetirizine) in Zyrtec D (Cetirizine / Pseudoephedrine) causes less drowsiness than other medications like Benadryl.
    • 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.
    • Doesn't make you drowsy or dizzy.
    Upsides and benefits
    Zyrtec DRhinocort Aqua
    • 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.
    • 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
    Zyrtec DRhinocort Aqua
    • 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.
    • 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
    Zyrtec DRhinocort Aqua
    • 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.
    • 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 Zyrtec DSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
    Have you used Zyrtec D (cetirizine / pseudoephedrine)?
    Worth itNot sureNot worth it
    More about Rhinocort AquaSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
    Have you used Rhinocort Aqua (budesonide)?
    Worth itNot sureNot worth it