Difference between Zyrtec and Claritin

Both Claritin and Zyrtec are drugs used to treat allergies. However, there are a few differences between the two. One of the differences is that Claritin was named after the generic drug Loratadine while Zyrtec was named after the generic drug Cetirizine. Reactine is another name used for Zyrtec.

The amount of each of the drugs sold annually is another difference. In 2008, Zyrtec was the most sold non-food product in the US. The amount of revenue generated by Zyrtec in 2008 exceeded $315.9 million. Claritin, on the other hand, is not purchased that much.

Claritin is available only in tablet form whereas Zyrtec comes in chewable tablets and in eye drops form apart from the tablet form. Infants as young as 6 years of age can be administered Claritin Reditab 12 hours tablets. These Claritin tablets are equally suitable for adults as well. Claritin Liquigel and Claritin D 24 hours are other tablet forms of Claritin. AS for Zyrtec, its eye drop form is used for people suffering from teary or itchy eyes.

Dryness of the mouth, nose and throat, drowsiness, blurred vision, nightmares and stomach ache are some of the side effects of Zyrtec whereas commonly reported side effects of Claritin are sedation and psychomotor retardation.

The molecular formula of Loratadine (Claritin) is C22H23ClN2O2 with a molar mass of 382.88 g/mol. On the other hand, the molecular formula of Cetirizine (Zyrtec) is C21H25ClN2O3 and Cetirizine has a molar mass of 388.89 g/mol.

Related: Difference between Allegra Fexofenadine and Zyrtec Cetirizine


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    Zyrtec is the trade name of a second-generation antihistamine Cetirizine. Zyrtec is available in both US and Canada over-the-counter and is one of the most used drugs for treating allergies. Pharmacies in Turkey, Australia and New Zealand have been licensed to sell Zyrtec over-the-counter. Zyrtec is mainly used for treating allergies, Rhinovirus infection and the Kimura’s disease. Just like any other drug, Zyrtec has its side effects as well.

    Related: How to Choose an Air Purifier for Allergies

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    Claritin is the trade name of second generation histamine antagonist drug Loratadine. In various countries such as the US, Canada, Mexico and UK, Claritin can be bought over-the-counter which means that you do not require a prescription from a practising physician to purchase Claritin.

    Related: Signs & Symptoms of Allergies to Dust Mites

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