Skin reactions to hydroxyzine

Contact Dermatitis. 1997 Mar;36(3):147-9. doi: 10.1111/j.1600-0536.1997.tb00397.x.


Sensitivity to histamine H1-antagonists has mainly been observed with phenothiazine and ethylenediamine, and is very rare with hydroxyzine. We report 3 cases of sensitization to hydroxyzine, which was prescribed to treat urticaria and atopic dermatitis. A generalized maculopapular eruption appeared shortly after taking the drug. Patch tests with Atarax tablet were positive +3, and +2 or +3 with different dilutions of hydroxyzine. Patch tests with ethylenediamine, piperazine and other antihistamines were negative; therefore, there is no cross-allergy. We believe these rapid systemic reactions to hydroxyzine after the initial dose may have been due to prior systemic sensitivity to this drug, which cannot be used topically. Allergy to antihistamines must be considered when cutaneous lesions worsen on such therapy.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Dermatitis, Atopic / drug therapy
  • Drug Eruptions / etiology*
  • Female
  • Histamine H1 Antagonists / adverse effects*
  • Histamine H1 Antagonists / pharmacology
  • Humans
  • Hydroxyzine / adverse effects*
  • Hydroxyzine / pharmacology
  • Pregnancy
  • Pregnancy Complications / etiology
  • Urticaria / drug therapy


  • Histamine H1 Antagonists
  • Hydroxyzine