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Desloratadine is a drug used to treat allergies. It is marketed under several trade names such as NeoClarityn, Claramax, Clarinex and Aerius. It is an active metabolite of loratadine, which is also on the market.

Available forms

Desloratadine is available as tablets and oral suspension.
Clarinex Drug

Mechanism of action
Desloratadine is a tricyclic antihistamine, which has a selective and peripheral H1-antagonist action. It has a long-lasting effect and does not cause drowsiness because it does not readily enter the central nervous system. It is 10-20 times more potent as an antihistamine than loratadine.

Desloratadine is rapidly absorbed from the gastro-intestinal tract. Desloratadine is moderately bound to plasma proteins (85%). The half-life of desloratadine is on average 28 hours. About 40% is excreted as conjugated metabolites into the urine and similar amount into the feces. Traces of unmetabolised desloratadine can be found in the urine.

Side effects
Most common side-effects are fatigue, drowsiness, dry mouth, headache, and gastrointestinal disturbances.

Desloratadine vs. loratadine
A November 2003 article published in the journal American Family Physician about the safety, tolerability, effectiveness, price, and simplicity of desloratadine concluded the following:

Desloratadine is similar in effectiveness to fexofenadine and would be expected to produce results similar to loratadine and other nonsedating antihistamines. There is no clinical advantage to switching a patient from loratadine to desloratadine. However, it may be an option for patients whose medical insurance no longer covers loratadine if the co-pay is less than the cost of the over-the-counter product.
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