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Table of Contents > Drugs >  Hydroxyzine
Hydroxyzine
Pronunciation
Brand Names
Foreign Brand Names
Therapeutic Categories
Reasons not to take this medicine
What is this medicine used for?
How does it work?
How is it best taken?
What do I do if I miss a dose?
What are the precautions when taking this medicine?
What are the common side effects of this medicine?
What should I monitor?
Reasons to call healthcare provider immediately
How should I store this medicine?
General statements

Pronunciation
(hye DROKS i zeen)

Brand Names
ANX®; Atarax®; Hyzine-50®; Restall®; Vistacot®; Vistaril®

Foreign Brand Names
Apo-Hydroxyzine® (Canada); Multipax® (Canada); Novo-Hydroxyzine® (Canada); PMS-Hydroxyzine (Canada)

Therapeutic Categories
Antiemetic; Antihistamine

Reasons not to take this medicine

  • If you have an allergy to hydroxyzine or any other part of the medicine.


What is this medicine used for?

  • This medicine relieves symptoms (runny nose; sneezing; throat irritation and itching; watery, irritated, itchy, red eyes) from allergies.
  • It can also be used to prevent/treat nausea or vomiting.
  • Other uses include treatment for itching, anxiety, and alcohol withdrawal.


How does it work?

  • Hydroxyzine, if taken before coming in contact with the material that causes the allergy, blocks the allergic reaction by minimizing/preventing the body's reaction to the allergen.
  • For nausea or vomiting, it affects nerve pathways in the vomiting center.
  • It also has calming effects.


How is it best taken?

  • Take with or without food. Take with food if this medicine causes an upset stomach.
  • A liquid (syrup, suspension) is available if you cannot swallow pills. Those who have feeding tubes can also use the liquid. Flush the feeding tube before and after medicine is given. Shake suspension well first.
  • Tablet may be crushed or capsule opened and mixed with food or liquid.


What do I do if I miss a dose?

  • Take a missed dose as soon as possible.
  • If it is almost time for the next dose, skip the missed one. Return to your regular schedule.
  • Do not take a double dose or extra doses.


What are the precautions when taking this medicine?

  • If you are 65 or older, you may have more side effects. You could feel feel sleepy, confused, constipated, or be unable to pass urine.
  • Avoid alcohol (includes wine, beer, and liquor) and other medicines and herbs that slow your actions and reactions. This includes sedatives, tranquilizers, mood stabilizers, or pain medicine. Talk with healthcare provider.
  • Increased activity or inability to sleep may be seen in children.
  • Tell healthcare provider if you are allergic to any medicine. Make sure to tell about the allergy and how it affected you. This includes telling about rash; hives; itching; shortness of breath; wheezing; cough; swelling of face, lips, tongue, throat; or any other symptoms involved.
  • Tell healthcare provider if you are pregnant or plan on getting pregnant.
  • Do not use if you are breast-feeding.


What are the common side effects of this medicine?

  • Feeling sleepy, tired, or unable to think clearly. Avoid driving, doing other tasks or activities that require you to be alert until you see how this medicine affects you.
  • Dry mouth. Frequent mouth care, sucking hard candy, or chewing gum may help.
  • Constipation. More liquids, regular exercise, or a fiber-containing diet may help. Talk with healthcare provider about a stool softener or laxative.
  • Unable to pass urine. Go to the bathroom before taking medicine. Talk with healthcare provider if it becomes a problem.


What should I monitor?

  • Check effectiveness of medicine in preventing or treating symptoms.


Reasons to call healthcare provider immediately

  • Signs of a life-threatening reaction. These include wheezing; tightness in the chest; fever; itching; bad cough; blue skin color; fits; swelling of face, lips, tongue, or throat.
  • Too tired or sleepy.
  • Any rash.
  • No improvement in condition or feeling worse.


How should I store this medicine?

  • Store in a tight, light-resistant container at room temperature.


General statements

  • Do not share your medicine with others and do not take anyone else's medicine.
  • Keep all medicine out of the reach of children and pets.
  • Keep a list of all your medicines (prescription, herbal/supplements, vitamins, over-the-counter) with you. Give this list to healthcare provider (doctor, nurse, pharmacist, physician assistant).
  • Talk with healthcare provider before starting any new medicine, including over-the-counter or natural products (herbs, vitamins).


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