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zrytec vs steroid to manage eczema

  1. #1
    mummybee is offline Registered User
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    zrytec vs steroid to manage eczema

    I have an 18-mo daughter with food allergies. She suffers from periodic flare-ups and a stubborn mouth rash (red skin along lipline) that I treat with steroid (elocon/elomet; 1% hydrocortisone having no effect anymore).

    When she turned 1, her paed allergist recommended, together by steriod use, zrytec (in baby doses) when she has a flare-up. Never consider giving it until she developed a nasty reaction couple of months back from an insect bite making her ear swelled up like a balloon, which led us to hospital emergency and the doctor saying we need zrytec pronto. Interesting thing is that upon one single dose of zrytec, not only did the ear swell subsided totally, the old rashes on her body not caused by insect bite eg mouth rash were gone too. And stayed gone for 2-3 weeks.

    Then last week a mild 'accident' happened at a party and 'cos it involved eggs which she is very allergic to, I gave her zrytec and again the itchiness stopped and mouth rash gone!

    Okay, my question to the panel is this: as I use steriod now only to treat her stubborn mouth rash, would zrytec outweigh the use of steroid at this sensitive part of the body, cos despite being extremely careful and putting it along her lipline after she sleeps, it bothers me she must have swallowed some even in her sleep.

    My husband's brother, with 2 eczema kids himself, said he gives zrytec nightly to the older child, aged 3 now, as it helps him breathe and not vomit at night from build-up of mucus at back of throat (he suffers from bad respiratory problems from allergy to dustmites). This child was initally given steroid spray but parents switched to zrytec as they are also uncomfortable spraying steroid up the child's nose.

    My question is: is zrytec the better of two evils so to speak? Can a child become immune to zrytec like antibiotics? My husband is strong advocate for zrytec as he takes another anti-histamine, clarytene, all his life with seemingly no problems. I myself suffered from snius problems in my teens and was prescribed some antihistamine medicine. Of course we are talking about a under 2 here and I being a fanatical mum, wish to do my own research before giving anything, medication or cream alike, to her.

    Please advice...

  2. #2
    kellyst is offline Registered User
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    i am long term zyrtec user myself. for nose allergies, i don't take it daily but use it when necessary when i feel the onset of the reaction coming. i have not climatized to it, so have been using zyrtec for over 10 years now, still working, interesting i think, hope that continues. but for me i think 30% is psychological as well.

    for your case, my guess is that zyrtec does sound like the lesser of the two evils, and i do think you can also grown immune to steroids as well? just my 2 cents... good luck.

  3. #3
    HKfornow is offline Registered User
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    Mummybee, went through the same thing few years ago, my son started his eczema since 2 weeks old, and had really bad flareups especially on cheeks/mouth, neck, armfolds & kneess etc., and after being prescribed pretty heavy duty steriods, we got referred to Allergy specialist then dermatologist. Anyway, the allergy specialist advised me to give my son Zyrtec every day when he was about 8 months old. I filled the prescription but did not give it to my son, like you I had concerns giving the medication. However, on my follow-up visits the Specialist questioned whether I gave my son Zyrtec as prescribed since he saw no improvements, and I admitted no. He was pretty upset at me and admonished me for not even giving the meds a try to see if it would help my son. . . I told him that I did not feel comfortable giving my son a medicine for long-term use, since he's still a baby! Finally we compromised, he said for me to try the medication for 6 months and then remove it to see how it goes, hopefully at that time, they hoped that my son's immune system would also improve. So that's what I did (after several long conversation with the pediatrician, dermatologist, and another doctor friend), Zyrtec alone did not work for my son, however with the stronger prescribed Steriod from the dermatologist, we were able to control the angry red flare ups & lessen his agony. Would the steriod have worked by itself without the Zyrtec? I don't know, however, I do know that the doctor told me that using steriods could cause thinning of the skin and I think my son's face is a bit affected by this as I can clearly see his veins around his mouth & neck area as his skin is a bit translucent around those areas.

    Have you talked to other doctors regarding the medicines to see if they agree with your Pedia/allergist? Talk to some other specialists and see if they have other recommendations or concerns if you give your child the medicines. . . it would make you feel better in the long run whichever direction you choose to take and hopefully your baby's immune system is improving by the day! Good luck.

  4. #4
    mummybee is offline Registered User
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    HKfornow, I saw altogether 2 paeds and 1 allergist in Australia, and 1 paed in HK. All said the same thing to me: use steroid until rashes not only clear but become soft like it should be. And use zrytec alongside now that she is older. I suspect her mouth rash persisted as I do not put enough for fear of consumption. Honestly i think other specialists would say the same. That is why I am keen to try zrytec. Do you remember the dosage of zyrtec you gave your son? I am thinking of trying for 1 month or so of perhaps twice weekly and see how it goes. No pain no gain right.
    I would like to hear advice from more people before final decision...

  5. #5
    nikkyliu is offline Registered User
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    Zrytec

    I will give Zrytec when she is very itcy. My pharmacist said this medicine is so mild. Even if you take too much dosage, there is no harm to body. She highly recommand this medicine to my girl.

  6. #6
    YKY
    YKY is offline Registered User
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    Mummybee, My son was prescribed zyrtec by his paed and dermatologist. Dosage was 2ml once per day when he was 4 months old. I found that it helped him sleep but after a few times, the effect started to wane. I told that to the paed when my son turned 6 mos. and he told us to up the dosage to 5ml and that he was reluctant to give anything stronger because my son was too young. We've stopped with it because it wasn't doing much good and lasted only 3-4 hours...
    Last edited by YKY; 04-09-2007 at 12:01 AM. Reason: wrong information

  7. #7
    HKfornow is offline Registered User
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    mummybee, sorry didn't get back to you sooner, been away on holiday, anyway, I am sorry I do not recall the dosage for the Zyrtec, my notes just say Zyrtec 5mg/5ml syr., but I will try to go back and see if I can find my notes on the original prescription.

  8. #8
    HKfornow is offline Registered User
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    Mummybee, the notes say zyrtec 1ml 2 x a day, and my one month prescription (which was all the insurance allowed at one go) is 60ml. He was not one yet at that time, so I think most meds are ml X weight anyway, hope it helps.

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