Diphenhydramine: Time to Move on? Academic Article uri icon

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  • Diphenhydramine is one of the most widely available, longest-used antihistamine medications but has many side effects including sedation and risk of toxicity in overdose including cardiac toxicity. It is frequently inappropriately used when newer, more favorable antihistamine medications are available. Second-generation antihistamines are also widely available and affordable, with many of the same desired effects as diphenhydramine and fewer, if any, of the undesirable side effects. Because of the negative side effects and wide availability of alternative antihistamine medications, it is definitively time to move on from diphenhydramine.


  • Wolfson, Anna R
  • Wong, Dennis
  • Abrams, Elissa M
  • Waserman, Susan
  • Sussman, Gordon L

publication date

  • December 2022