For people who have high blood pressure, Claritin is not likely to cause problems because it does not have a stimulatory effect on the heart and blood pressure. Claritin-D, however, contains pseudoephedrine and may not be safe for people with high blood pressure. It's best to talk to your healthcare provider before taking any medicine if you have high blood pressure -- Claritin included -- just to be safe.
Claritin and High Blood Pressure: An Overview
Claritin® (loratadine) is a non-prescription medication used to treat allergies and hives. It belongs to a group of medications known as non-sedating antihistamines. It is always a good idea for people with high blood pressure (hypertension) to use caution before taking any non-prescription medications, particularly cold, cough, and allergy products.
Is Claritin Safe for People With High Blood Pressure?
Unlike many other non-prescription cold, cough, and allergy products, Claritin appears to be safe for people with high blood pressure. The drug is an antihistamine and does not have a stimulatory effect on the heart and blood pressure. However, Claritin-D® products may not be safe for people with high blood pressure. Claritin-D contains pseudoephedrine, a decongestant. Like most decongestants, pseudoephedrine can stimulate the heart and blood pressure, which can be a problem for people with hypertension.
Although pseudoephedrine is more likely to cause problems in people with uncontrolled high blood pressure, even people with controlled blood pressure (who take blood pressure medication) may be affected by it. Also, it is important to remember that your blood pressure may not be adequately controlled, even if you take blood pressure medicine.
Final Thoughts on Claritin and High Blood Pressure
Claritin is unlikely to cause an increase in blood pressure. However, Claritin-D may increase blood pressure. If you have high blood pressure, it is a good idea to check with your healthcare provider before taking Claritin-D. If your blood pressure is under control, your healthcare provider may decide that it is okay for you to try Claritin-D if you monitor your blood pressure closely, making sure it does not increase.
Written by/reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;Arthur Schoenstadt, MD
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