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Classification: B

Drug products: Atarax, Atyxine, Hydroxizin Alternova, Hydroxizin Omet Pharma, Hydroxyzine Bluefish, Hydroxyzine EQL Pharma, Hydroxyzine Medical Valley, Hydroxyzine Orifarm, Hydroxyzine Orion

ATC code: N05BB01

Substances: hydroxyzine, hydroxyzine hydrochloride


Studies on sex differences in hydroxyzine efficacy, safety and pharmacokinetics are lacking.

Hydroxyzine is contraindicated in patients with pre-existing prolonged QT interval. A sex difference has not been shown for hydroxyzine but female sex is a known risk factor for the dysrhythmia Torsade de pointes ventricular tachycardia.

Additional information

Pharmacokinetics and dosing

No studies with a clinically relevant sex analysis regarding the pharmacokinetics or dosing of hydroxyzine have been found.


No studies with a clinically relevant sex analysis regarding the effects of hydroxyzine have been found.

Adverse effects

The Pharmacovigilance Risk Assessment Committee at the The European Medicines Agency has reviewed medicines containing hydroxyzine and the risk of possible effects on hearth rhythm. Hydroxyzine was associated with a small risk of QT interval prolongation and Torsade de pointes ventricular tachycardia, even at the lowest effective dose. Hydroxyzine should be avoided in patients who already have risk factors for heart rhythm disturbances [2]. Women have been associated with a longer baseline QT interval and have an increased risk for drug-induced Torsade de pointes [3].

Reproductive health issues

Regarding teratogenic aspects, please consult Janusmed Drugs and Birth Defects (in Swedish, Janusmed fosterpåverkan).

Other information

Hydroxyzine was compared with diazepam as premedication before surgery (49 men, 59 women) in a double-blind randomized manner. In men, there was no difference between the effect of diazepam and hydroxyzine. In women, hydroxyzine was better than diazepam in relieving anxiety [1].

Updated: 2020-08-28

Date of litterature search: 2015-08-11


  1. Herr GP, Conner JT, Schehl D, Dorey F. Comparison of i m diazepam and hydroxyzine as premedicants. Br J Anaesth. 1982;54:3-9. PubMed
  2. European Medicines Agency. PRAC recommends new measures to minimise known heart risks of hydroxyzine-containing medicines. European Medicines Agency [www]. European Medicines Agency. [updated 2015-02-13, cited 2015-08-11]. länk
  3. Roden DM. Drug-induced prolongation of the QT interval. N Engl J Med. 2004;350:1013-22. PubMed
  4. Läkemedelsstatistik. Stockholm: Socialstyrelsen. 2015 [cited 2016-04-29] länk

Authors: Linnéa Karlsson Lind, Desirée Loikas

Reviewed by: Mia von Euler

Approved by: Karin Schenck-Gustafsson