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From Maryville, Tennessee, USA:

My stepdaughter has type 1 diabetes, along with seasonal allergies, and her doctor told us to throw away her Zyrtec (cetirizine) because it contained sugar so we did since her allergies were not bothering her. Now, however, they are, and I don't know what to give her because every thing that is a syrup contains sugar except for Robitussin which I don't think that will give her much relief. What allergy products would be safe to give my step daughter?


If you give her the same amount of Zyrtec every day at the same time for weeks at a time during the allergy season, you should be able to adjust the insulin to keep the blood sugar normal if it goes up with the medication. Some of the allergy pills are very small like Clarinex which also has a decongestant effect without the side effects of the usual decongestants.


Additional comments from Dr. Larry Deeb:

The amount of sugar in a teaspoon of a needed drug is unimportant if the drug is needed for the benefit of the child.


Additional comments from Dr. Stuart Brink:

Zyrtec can be used. While it is always better to use pills, capsules or tablets rather than sugar-containing liquids, t there is actually not very much sugar in any of these liquid forms that would cause major problems with glucose control. We use Zyrtec and all other allergy medicine in kids and adults with diabetes without restrictions.


Additional comments from Dr. Donough O'Brien:

If the Zyrtec Syrup was helpful with the allergies, you should not need to discontinue it because of the type 1 diabetes. The amount of sugar in a teaspoon of syrup is insufficient to have to alter the 'carbs' in the diet or the dose of insulin. Alternatively, she could take the drug in tablet form.


Original posting 6 Nov 2002
Posted to Other Medications


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