Fexofenadine is a medication belonging to a group of drugs called antihistamines. These medications affect the way that the body responds to stimuli like dust, pollen, and dander. More information

A doctor will review your order and write you a prescription, if appropriate. This prescription is then forwarded to a pharmacy. The pharmacy will have your medicine delivered to you within one to three working days. Read more about this process here.

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Patient Leaflet(s)

Fexofenadine is a kind of antihistamine used to reduce the dangerous responses that the body may have to stimuli like pollen. The active ingredient in Fexofenadine is Fexofenadine hydrochloride. This medication is available on prescription and may be available over the counter in some places.  

 What is Fexofenadine? 

Fexofenadine is a medication belonging to a group of drugs called antihistamines. These medications affect the way that the body responds to stimuli like dust, pollen, and dander.  

Exposure to certain stimuli can cause the human body to respond with allergy-type systems. The cells in the lining of your eyes and nose produce and release a chemical called histamine when they encounter irritants like dust and pollen, leading to symptoms like a runny nose, cough, or watering eyes. Some people can also experience inflammation and soreness.  

Fexofenadine is an antihistamine, which means that it counteracts the effects of the naturally produced histamines in your body, reducing your risk of side effects. Although some antihistamines are available over the counter, Fexofenadine is often given on prescription. It is available in tablet form.  

When is Fexofenadine used? 

Fexofenadine, like other antihistamines, is used to relieve allergy symptoms such as running noses, watery eyes, itching eyes, and sneezing. In some cases, it can also assist with dryness and hives caused by allergic responses to stimuli like dust and dander. Doctors and medical professionals often prescribe Fexofenadine for: 

  • Hay fever: A kind of allergic reaction to pollen 
  • Itching and discomfort caused by dust 
  • Chronic Urticaria 

Fexofenadine can be used to treat Urticaria in its chronic and acute forms. In a case of Urticaria, itchy skin rashes developed, often triggered by an allergy or another unknown factor. If the rash lasts for more than 4-6 weeks, it is usually referred to as chronic, and you may be given a number of treatments to address it.  

There are different strengths of Fexofenadine available today, including 30mg, 120mg, and 180mg tablets. Your doctor or medical consultant may be able to give you advice on which strength you need. Higher strengths are often recommended for chronic urticaria.  

How do you use Fexofenadine ? 

If you are taking Fexofenadine in its over-the-counter form, it is important to read the instructions provided with this medication carefully. All medications, including Fexofenadine will come with a patient leaflet. Reading this leaflet will give you advice on how to use the medication correctly, as well as any side effects that you need to watch out for. 

Read the instructions for taking Fexofenadine then ask your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions before taking this medication. If you are using the liquid form of this medication, shake the bottle thoroughly before each use. Do not use a standard household spoon as a measuring device. You will be given a special measuring spoon to use with the liquid.  

If you are taking the tablet version of Fexofenadine, you should take it with liquid. The rapidly-dissolving tablet of Fexofenadine is best taken with an empty stomach, which means that you’ll need to take it at least one hour before eating, or two hours after. Allow the dissolving tablet to melt on your tongue, then swallow. You can use water to help you swallow after the tablet has dissolved.  

If you need to use liquid to take this medication, such as water when you are using the capsules or tablets, make sure that you do not use any fruit juices. Orange, grapefruit, and apple juices can sometimes reduce your body’s ability to absorb this drug.  

What dosages are there? 

Your dosage of Fexofenadine will depend on your treatment. Often, higher doses are given for those treating chronic urticaria than those who need to treat hay fever and general allergic responses.  
As well as considering your medical condition, your doctor will also look at your response to treatment in the past and your age when deciding which dose of Fexofenadine to give you. The typical dose is one tablet taken twice a day, usually once every twelve hours.  

It’s important to take your dose of Fexofenadine at equally spaced times during the day, so your body can get an even amount of it into your system. Do not take tablets containing aluminium or magnesium within 2 hours of using this medication. Those antacids may reduce your ability to absorb Fexofenadine.  

Tell your doctor if your condition does not improve when using Fexofenadine or gets worse after you have taken the tablets.  

What are the side effects of Fexofenadine? 

Medications can cause side effects alongside their intended effects. Although Fexofenadine deemed a safe treatment for conditions like hay fever and allergies, there is a risk that your body will respond negatively to this medication. Checking the patient leaflet include in your medication for a complete list of side effects will help you to prepare and know what to do if you encounter any problems.  

The most common side effects of Fexofenadine diminish on their own, these include a cough, and stomach upset. Some people experience a slight fever after they begin taking Fexofenadine for the first time. You might also encounter some dizziness. If this happens, make sure that you don’t drive or operate any machinery until you feel well enough to do so.  

If your side effects persist or worsen over time, tell your doctor. Your doctor or medical consultant may be able to recommend an alternative treatment to Fexofenadine that doesn’t cause the same responses.  

Tell your doctor if you notice any other serious side effects, including a sudden or serious allergic reaction to this drug. Although having an allergic reaction to a medication like Fexofenadine is rare, you should seek medical help immediately if you notice symptoms like a rash, itching, or trouble breathing.  

Some allergic reactions can cause swelling in the tongue, throat, and lips. Seek emergency medical attention if this happens, or if you feel extremely dizzy.  

This is not a complete list of side effects for Fexofenadine. If you notice any other symptoms that have not been listed here, contact your doctor or a medical professional for more advice and stop taking Fexofenadine.  

When shouldn’t you use Fexofenadine? 

Before you begin taking Fexofenadine, it is important to answer any questions your doctor or medical consultant has about your condition and your medical history. Fexofenadine will not be the right treatment for everyone. If it is not suitable for you, then your doctor or consultant might be able to suggest an alternative medication that has a lower risk of side effects.  

Before taking Fexofenadine tell your doctor or consultant if you have ever had an allergic response to similar medications or antihistamines. You should also make your doctor or consultant aware of any other allergies that you have, as Fexofenadine can contain inactive ingredients that may cause allergic responses. 

Tell your doctor if you have a history with kidney disease before using this medication, or anyone in your family has had problems with their kidney. You should also make sure that your dentist or doctor is aware of all the medications that you are taking, including Fexofenadine before you have treatment.  

The liquid version of Fexofenadine can include sugar. The rapidly dissolving tablets version of this medication can also contain aspartame. It is important to use caution if you have PKU or diabetes when you are taking this substance. Make sure that you ask your doctor or consultant about taking certain versions of this product when you have these conditions.  

Fexofenadine should only be used during pregnancy when it is clearly needed and there isn’t another option.  

Does Fexofenadine interact with other medications? 

Drug interactions can change the way that your medications work and sometimes increase your chances of experiencing severe side effects. Because of this, it is important to keep a list of all the medications that you are taking and give that list to your doctor or medical consultant before you start a new medication.  

Make sure that your doctor or consultant is aware of all the medications that you are using, including prescription drugs, over the counter medications, herbal remedies and supplements. Do not start or change the dosage of any medication that you are using alongside Fexofenadine without the guidance of a medical professional.  

Although there are no severe interactions listed at this time for Fexofenadine and other medications, that could change. Make sure that you check with your doctor before taking Fexofenadine. This medication can also sometimes interfere with laboratory tests, such as allergy skin testing, causing different results. Your laboratory personnel should be made aware that you are using Fexofenadine before you begin a test.   

Where can you buy Fexofenadine? 

Depending on where you live, it may be possible to buy Fexofenadine both online and offline from a pharmacy. You will need a prescription to get some kinds of Fexofenadine, but other options may be available over the counter. Even if you can get Fexofenadine over the counter, it’s best to check that this product is safe for you to use with a doctor or consultant first.  

Can I get Fexofenadine without a prescription? 

Fexofenadine is available in some forms with out a prescription, but you may need a prescription to get certain doses of this medication. Always seek medical advice before taking a new type of medication.  


Medicines.org, (2018, September 25) Fexofenadine hydrochloride 180mg film-coated Tablets, Retrieved March 27th 2020 from: https://www.medicines.org.uk/emc/product/3488/pil 

NICE, BNF, (2020) FEXOFENADINE HYDROCHLORIDE, Retrieved March 14th 2020 from: https://bnf.nice.org.uk/drug/fexofenadine-hydrochloride.html 

Stewart, Michael, (2017, June 1) : Fexofenadine tablets, Retrieved March 27th 2020 from: https://patient.info/medicine/fexofenadine-tablets-telfast-allegra  

Assessed by:

Dr Imran Malik, General practitioner
Registration number: GMC: 4741365

Dr Imran Malik studied undergraduate medicine at King's College University in Central London and clinical studies at the prestigious King's College Hospital. He graduated with a MBBS degree in 2000 and went on to gain postgraduate memberships with the Royal Society of Medicine and also General Practice in 2006.