( Zyrtec )

Medically Reviewed by HaVy Ngo, Pharm.D.

Last Reviewed: Jun 14, 2022

Drug Details

Generic Name:


Common Brands:

Zyrtec, Zyrtec Allergy, Aller-Tec Children's Zyrtec Allergy, PediaCare Children's 24 Hour Allergy, Children's Zyrtec Hives Relief, Wal-Zyr


Over-the-counter and prescription

Therapeutic Class:

Second-generation antihistamine


  • Oral tablet
    • 5 mg tablet
    • 10 mg tablet
  • Oral-disintegrating tablet:
    • 10 mg tablet
  • Chewable tablet:
    • 5 mg tablet
    • 10 mg tablet
  • Oral syrup: 
    • 5 mg/5 mL
  • Oral solution:
    • 5 mg/5 mL


By mouth

Therapeutic Uses:

Relief of allergy symptoms, including runny nose, sneezing, itchy or watery eyes, itchy nose or throat

Controlled Status:

Not a controlled substance

What is cetirizine hydrochloride (Zyrtec)?

Cetirizine hydrochloride is a second-generation antihistamine that is available with a prescription or over-the-counter. The most common use of cetirizine is to treat cold and upper respiratory allergy symptoms such as sneezing, itching, watery eyes, or runny nose.

Cetirizine is also used to treat symptoms of hives (chronic urticaria) such as swelling and itching. In addition to that, cetirizine is indicated to reduce the symptoms of perennial allergic rhinitis (a chronic allergic condition), seasonal allergic rhinitis, chronic idiopathic urticaria, allergic asthma, and atopic dermatitis. 

There may be other uses of cetirizine—your pharmacist or physician can give you further information and assistance.

Who can take cetirizine hydrochloride (Zyrtec)?

  • Adults
  • Children who are at least six months old