Compare Zyrtec vs. Qvar

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

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Zyrtec (cetirizine)

Over-the-counter

Qvar (beclomethasone)

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
Controls asthma.

Qvar (beclomethasone) is good for controlling and preventing asthma symptoms, but it's not a rescue inhaler and must be taken daily.

3.2/ 5 average rating with 35 reviewsforQvar
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).
  • Qvar (beclomethasone) is an inhaled corticosteroid, which is the most effective class of medicines to manage asthma when taken daily.
  • Inhaling Qvar (beclomethasone) has fewer side effects than taking a pill by mouth.
  • Safe for use by children 5 years and older.
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).
  • Can take up to 2 weeks for better control of asthma symptoms and up to 3 to 4 weeks for maximum effects.
  • Can cause fungal infections of the mouth and throat, especially if you don't rinse your mouth after use.
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Used for
Dosage forms
  • Pill
  • Chewable tablet
  • Dissolving tablet
  • Liquid
  • Inhaler
Price
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Reviews
1232 reviews so far
76%
saidit'sworth it
47%
saiditworked well
7%
saidit'sa big hassle

Have you used Zyrtec (cetirizine)?

Leave a review
35 reviews so far
34%
saidit'sworth it
29%
saiditworked well
26%
saidit'sa big hassle

Have you used Qvar (beclomethasone)?

Leave a review
Side effects
The Zyrtec (cetirizine) FDA package insert doesn’t have numbers about how common side effects are.
7possible side effects
  • Infection of airways, nose, and throat
    11%
  • Headache
    8%
  • Sore throat
    5%
  • More asthma symptoms
    4%
  • Runny, stuffy nose
    3%
  • Common cold symptoms
    3%
  • Pain
    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
  • Effects on eyes
    • Long-term use of Qvar (beclomethasone)
    • History of glaucoma
    • History of high eye pressure
    • History of cataracts
  • Sudden-onset breathing problems
  • Weakened immune system
    • Not current with vaccinations
    • Taking other steroid medicines
    • Current infection without treatment
  • Bone loss
    • History of osteoporosis
    • Taking other medicines that cause bone loss
    • Long-term use of steroid medicines
  • Adrenal gland problems
    • Switching from steroid pills to steroid inhalers
    • Long-term use of steroid medicines
    • Stopping steroid medicines too quickly
  • Slower growth rate in children
    • Children
    • High doses of Qvar (beclomethasone)
    • Long-term use of Qvar (beclomethasone)
See more detailed risks and warnings