Fexofenadine (By mouth)

Introduction

Fexofenadine (fex-oh-FEN-a-deen)

Treats hay fever symptoms such as sneezing, runny nose, watery eyes, and itchy throat. Also treats chronic skin hives and itching.

Brand Name(s)

There may be other brand names for this medicine.

Allegra, Allegra ODT

When This Medicine Should Not Be Used

You should not use this medicine if you have had an allergic reaction to fexofenadine or to terfenadine (Seldane®).

How to Use This Medicine

Capsule, Liquid, Tablet, Dissolving Tablet, Long Acting Tablet

  • Your doctor will tell you how much of this medicine to use and how often. Do not use more medicine or use it more often than your doctor tells you to.
  • It is best to take the tablet with water.
  • Shake the oral liquid well before using.
  • If you are using the disintegrating tablet, make sure your hands are dry before you handle the tablet. Do not open the blister pack that contains the tablet until you are ready to take it. Remove the tablet from the blister pack by peeling back the foil, then taking the tablet out. Do not push the tablet through the foil. Place the tablet in your mouth. It should melt quickly. After the tablet has melted, swallow or take a drink of water.
  • The oral disintegrating tablet should be taken on an empty stomach. Do not chew or break the tablet.
  • Measure the oral liquid medicine with a marked measuring spoon, oral syringe, or medicine cup.

If a dose is missed:

  • If you miss a dose or forget to use your medicine, use it as soon as you can. If it is almost time for your next dose, wait until then to use the medicine and skip the missed dose. Do not use extra medicine to make up for a missed dose.

How to Store and Dispose of This Medicine

  • Store the medicine in a closed container at room temperature, away from heat, moisture, and direct light.
  • Ask your pharmacist, doctor, or health caregiver about the best way to dispose of any leftover medicine after you have finished your treatment. You will also need to throw away old medicine after the expiration date has passed.
  • Keep all medicine away from children and never share your medicine with anyone.

Drugs and Foods to Avoid

Ask your doctor or pharmacist before using any other medicine, including over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products.

  • Make sure your doctor knows if you are also using erythromycin (E-Mycin®) or ketoconazole (Nizoral®).
  • Do not use other antihistamines (cold or allergy medicines) with fexofenadine without asking your doctor.
  • Do not take antacids that contain aluminum or magnesium (such as Maalox®) within 15 minutes before or after taking fexofenadine.
  • Do not eat grapefruit or drink grapefruit, orange, or apple juice while you are using this medicine.

Warnings While Using This Medicine

  • Make sure your doctor knows if you are pregnant or breast-feeding, or if you have kidney disease.
  • This medicine may make you dizzy or drowsy. Avoid driving, using machines, or doing anything else that could be dangerous if you are not alert.
  • Do not give this medicine to your child unless your doctor tells you to.
  • The oral disintegrating tablet contains phenylalanine. Tell your doctor if you have a condition called phenylketonuria (PKU) before taking the tablet.
  • If your symptoms do not improve or if they get worse, call your doctor.

Possible Side Effects While Using This Medicine

Call your doctor right away if you notice any of these side effects:

  • Allergic reaction: Itching or hives, swelling in your face or hands, swelling or tingling in your mouth or throat, chest tightness, trouble breathing.
  • Ear pain, swelling, or drainage.
  • Fever, chills, cough, sore throat, and body aches.

If you notice these less serious side effects, talk with your doctor:

  • Back pain.
  • Dry mouth or stuffy nose.
  • Headache or dizziness.
  • Increased pain or cramping during menstruation.
  • Muscle pain.
  • Nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, upset stomach or indigestion.
  • Pain in arms or legs.
  • Sleepiness or unusual drowsiness.
  • Unusual tiredness or weakness.

If you notice other side effects that you think are caused by this medicine, tell your doctor

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088

Review Date: 2011-02-04 Reviewed By: Keywords: ,
Adam Data Copyright The information provided herein should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. A licensed medical professional should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions. Call 911 for all medical emergencies. Links to other sites are provided for information only--they do not constitute endorsements of those other sites. © 1997- 2010 A.D.A.M., Inc. Any duplication or distribution of the information contained herein is strictly prohibited.

For information 410.787.4000

© 2013 UM Baltimore Washington Medical Center.  All rights reserved.

301 Hospital Drive, Glen Burnie, MD 21061 | 410-787-4000 | TTY 410-787-4498