Desloratadine is an oral, long-acting antihistamine that is similar chemically to loratadine (Claritin). It is used to treat the symptoms caused by histamine. Histamine is a chemical that is responsible for many of the signs and symptoms of allergic reactions, for example, swelling of the lining of the nose, sneezing, and itchy eyes. Histamine is released from histamine-storing cells (mast cells) and then attaches to other cells that have receptors for histamine. The attachment of the histamine to the receptors causes the cell to be "activated," releasing other chemicals which produce the effects that we associate with allergy. Desloratadine blocks one type of receptor for histamine (the H1 receptor) and thus prevents activation of H1 receptor-containing cells by histamine. Desloratadine does not readily enter the brain from the blood and, therefore, causes less drowsiness (sedation). It is a member of a small family of non-sedating antihistamines which includes loratadine (Claritin), cetirizine (Zyrtec), and azelastine (Astelin). Desloratadine was approved by the FDA in December, 2001.
Desloratadine can be taken with or without food. Take it exactly as directed. Do not crush, chew, or break the regular desloratadine tablet. Swallow the pill whole
This medication may cause throat discomfort, muscle pain, nausea, dizziness, fatigue, indigestion, or dry mouth. If these effects persist or worsen, notify your doctor or pharmacist promptly. Tell your doctor immediately if this unlikely but serious side effect occurs: rapid or pounding heartbeat. Desloratadine does not usually cause drowsiness when used at recommended doses and under normal circumstances. However, be sure of the drug's effects before engaging in activities that require alertness such as driving or using machinery. A serious allergic reaction to this drug is unlikely, but seek immediate medical attention if it occurs. Symptoms of a serious allergic reaction include: rash, itching, swelling, severe dizziness, trouble breathing. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist.
Do not increase the dose of desloratadine or take it more than once a day. Higher doses have no additional effect on hay fever symptoms and may cause drowsiness.
The chewable tablet form of Amoxil contains phenylalanine. If you have the hereditary disease phenylketonuria this form of Amoxil should not be used.
Desloratadine is not approved for children under 12.
There may be other drugs that can affect desloratadine. Tell your doctor about all the prescription and over-the-counter medications you use. This includes vitamins, minerals, herbal products, and drugs prescribed by other doctors. Do not start using a new medication without telling your doctor.
Take it as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the one you missed and go back to your regular schedule. Never take 2 doses at the same time.
Store at room temperature. Protect from heat.