Compare Zyrtec vs. Astepro

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

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Zyrtec (cetirizine)

Over-the-counter

Astepro (azelastine)

Prescription only
Treats allergy symptoms.

Zyrtec (cetirizine) can help you with some allergy symptoms without making you very drowsy.

3.8/ 5 average rating with 1232 reviewsforZyrtec
Relieves nasal allergy symptoms.

Astepro (azelastine) is an antihistamine nasal spray that can help with allergy or nasal symptoms.

Upsides
  • Zyrtec (cetirizine) works to treat sneezing and runny nose, and causes less sedation compared to Benadryl.
  • Works well to also treat hives and itchy skin.
  • Zyrtec (cetirizine) is available over the counter without a prescription. It comes as a tablet, liquid, and quick-dissolving tablet.
  • It can provide relief of allergy symptoms for both kids and adults.
  • Zyrtec (cetirizine) has few drug interactions with other medicines.
  • Most people don't get any side effects from Zyrtec (cetirizine).
  • Astepro (azelastine) is good for relieving nasal symptoms during allergy season.
  • Since Astepro (azelastine) goes in the nose, it's unlikely you'll get side effects anywhere else in your body.
  • Astepro (azelastine) works faster than steroid nasal sprays and can be used as needed.
  • People usually tolerate Astepro (azelastine) well since there are few side effects.
Downsides
  • Although it works fast, Zyrtec (cetirizine)'s effectiveness wears off for some people over time.
  • Zyrtec (cetirizine) can make you a little more sleepy compared to Allegra or Claritin.
  • Some people find that other more sedating antihistamines, like Benadryl (diphenhydramine), are more effective for them than Zyrtec (cetirizine).
  • Astepro (azelastine) has 200 sprays, but no counter to help keep track of sprays.
  • It can cause a bitter taste in your mouth.
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Used for
Dosage forms
  • Pill
  • Chewable tablet
  • Dissolving tablet
  • Liquid
  • Nasal spray
Price
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Reviews
1232 reviews so far
76%
saidit'sworth it
47%
saiditworked well
7%
saidit'sa big hassle

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Side effects
The Zyrtec (cetirizine) FDA package insert doesn’t have numbers about how common side effects are.
5possible side effects
  • Bitter Taste
    8%
  • Nose discomfort
    4%
  • Nosebleeds
    2%
  • Headache
    2%
  • Fatigue
    2%
See more detailed side effects
Risks and risk factors
  • Increased side effects in the elderly
    • Age 65 or older
  • Impaired alertness
    • Taking with alcohol
    • Taking other medicines that make you less alert
  • History of liver or kidney conditions
    • History of liver or kidney disease
See more detailed risks and warnings
  • Difficulty concentrating
    • Taking with alcohol
    • Taking other medicines that make you less alert
See more detailed risks and warnings