Can Claritin [loratadine] cause high blood pressure? It is ok to take loratadine if I have hypertension?
Claritin (and the equivalent generic loratadine) is a second generation antihistamine or allergy medicine. It reduces allergy symptoms by blocking the effects of histamine in the body. A once a day 10mg dose generally provides adults with relief from allergy symptoms with few side effects. The most common side effects are headache, drowsiness or fatigue and dry mouth.
Loratadine does not affect blood pressure in most adults. In rare instances it can affect heart rate or even drop blood pressure lower. If you have high blood pressure it is always a good idea to monitor it on a regular basis, especially when taking other medications. If your blood pressure is not properly controled I would encourage you to visit with your healthcare provider.
Sometimes you may find loratadine paired with the decongestant pseudoephedrine (sold under the brand name Claritin-D, Alavert-D and others). That combination can increase heart rate and blood pressure. Decongestants are best avoided by those with uncontrolled high blood pressure and heart rate issues. If you are uncertain is pseudoephedrine is appropriate for you be certain to speak with a licensed healthcare professional prior to use.
If you are being treated for high blood pressure, it is a good idea to periodical monitor your blood pressure. Home monitors have become quite affordable and generally the ones that use the upper arm provide the best readings.
If you are unsure which allergy medication is safe for you talk to your pharmacist or Doctor. They can help you determine the appropriate medication based on your symptoms and other health conditions.
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