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Levocetirizine

The meaning of «levocetirizine»

Levocetirizine, sold under the brand name Xyzal among others, is an antihistamine used for the treatment of allergic rhinitis (hay fever) and long term hives of unclear cause.[1] It is less sedating than older antihistamines.[2] It is taken by mouth.[1]

Common side effects include sleepiness, dry mouth, cough, vomiting, and diarrhea.[1] Use in pregnancy appears safe but has not been well studied and use when breastfeeding is of unclear safety.[3] It is classified as a second-generation antihistamine and works by blocking histamine H1-receptors.[4][1]

Levocetirizine was approved for medical use in the United States in 2007.[1] It is available as a generic medication.[2] In 2017, it was the 175th most commonly prescribed medication in the United States, with more than three million prescriptions.[5][6]

Levocetirizine is used for allergic rhinitis.[7] This includes allergy symptoms such as watery eyes, runny nose, sneezing, hives, and itching.[8]

Levocetirizine is called a non-sedating antihistamine as it does not enter the brain in significant amounts, and is therefore unlikely to cause drowsiness. Cardiac safety with repolarization may be better than some other antihistamines, as levocetirizine does not significantly prolong the QT interval in healthy individuals.[9][10][11] However, some people may still experience some slight sleepiness, headache, mouth dryness, lightheadedness, vision problems (mainly blurred vision), palpitations and fatigue.[12]

Levocetirizine is an antihistamine. It acts as an inverse agonist that decreases activity at histamine H1 receptors. This in turn prevents the release of other allergy chemicals and increase the blood supply to the area, and provides relief from the typical symptoms of hay fever.

Chemically, levocetirizine is the active levorotary enantiomer of cetirizine, also called the l-enantiomer of cetirizine. It is a member of the diphenylmethylpiperazine group of antihistamines.

Levocetirizine was first launched in 2001 by Belgian pharmaceutical company UCB.

On 31 January 2017, the Food and Drug Administration approved an over-the-counter version.[13] Although the drug was authorized by the FDA in 2007, it was already available in most European countries. Like many new drugs it entered the market at a higher price than currently available third and second generation antihistamines. In India, one form of the drug is available as Crohist MK tablets and syrup, a formulation of levocetirizine hydrochloride and montelukast. In India, Crohist MK is a Schedule 'H' drug and may only be prescribed by a registered medical practitioner.

Levocetirizine is sold under the following brand names:

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