Allegra is an antihistamine used primarily for the treatment of seasonal allergies. It relieves common allergy symptoms with minimal side effects. Allegra works by blocking the effects of histamine, reducing the symptoms of sneezing, runny nose, and irritation of the throat and eyes. Allegra comes in the form of tablets, orally disintegrating tablets (ODTs), and oral suspension (liquid). Common side effects of Allegra may include headache, back pain, or coughing.
What Is Allegra?Allegra® (fexofenadine hydrochloride) is a medication used to treat allergies and hives. It is part of a class of medicines called "antihistamines." Allegra is also available with an added decongestant, known as Allegra-D.
Allegra was originally a prescription medication. However, in March 2011, it became available over-the-counter (OTC). At this time, all of the current over-the-counter Allegra products are labeled only to be used for treating allergies.
However, the manufacturer has received approval for over-the-counter use of the medication for hives. It is probably just a matter of time before Allegra products labeled for hives treatment become available.
Who Makes It?Allegra is manufactured by sanofi-aventis Pharmaceuticals.
What Is Allegra Used For?Allegra has been licensed for several uses in adults and children six years of age and older. These uses for Allegra include:
- Relief of seasonal allergy symptoms (hay fever)
- Treatment of chronic (long-term) hives and itching, known as "chronic urticaria."
(Click What Is Allegra Used For? for more information.)