Skip to content
My WebMD Sign In, Sign Up

Allergies Health Center

Font Size
A
A
A

Most Common Drugs That Cause Allergies

Any drug can trigger an allergic reaction. That said, some are more likely to cause allergy-related problems than others.

  • Antibiotics -- amoxicillin, ampicillin, penicillin, tetracycline, and others
  • Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs -- Advil, Motrin, Nuprin (ibuprofen); Aleve, Anaprox (naproxen); and others
  • Aspirin
  • Sulfa drugs
  • Chemotherapy drugs
  • Monoclonal antibody therapy -- Erbitux (cetuximab), Rituxan (rituximab), and others
  • HIV drugs -- Viramune (nevirapine), Ziagen (abacavir), and others
  • Insulin
  • Antiseizure drugs -- Carbatrol, Epitol, Equetro, Tegretol (carbamazepine); Lamictal (lamotrigine); Dilantin, Di-Phen, Phenytek (phenytoin); and others 
  • Muscle relaxers given intravenously -- Anectine (succinylcholine), Norcuron (vecuronium), Tracrium (atracurium)

How you take a drug plays a part, too. Here are four things that increase your odds of having a drug allergy:

Recommended Related to Allergies

Regional Allergies

Q: Atlanta is beautiful in the spring, but my allergies are so bad! Will moving to the desert make them go away? A: Ragweed and grass pollens are triggers that are difficult to avoid almost everywhere in the continental United States during the spring and summer. Although much of Arizona and New Mexico is arid, most people in the cities, suburbs, and small towns grow grass for lawns. Plus, the land has been disturbed by construction and landscaping, so weeds are widespread. Las Vegas, Tucson,...

Read the Regional Allergies article > >

  • Getting the drug by injection instead of by mouth
  • Using drugs that you rub directly on the skin
  • Taking the drug often

Many drugs can cause reactions that aren’t true allergies, even though they can range from mild side effects to dangerous symptoms. Some drugs that commonly cause non-allergic symptoms include:

  • Heart disease medications called ACE inhibitors (Capoten, Lotensin, Monopril, Vasotec, Zestril and others)
  • Contrast dyes for X-rays and CT scans
  • Some chemotherapy drugs

WebMD Medical Reference

Reviewed by Laura J. Martin, MD on October 22, 2012

Today on WebMD

epinephrine at school
Article
Woman sneezing with tissue in meadow
Slideshow
 
Woman wth tissue
Slideshow
thumbnail_florist_wearing_surgical_mask
Slideshow
 

woman sneezing
Slideshow
Bottle of allergy capsules and daisies
Article
 
Urban blossoms
Slideshow
Woman blowing nose
Slideshow
 

Woman with itchy watery eyes
Slideshow
Yawning Dog
Slideshow
 
Man sneezing into tissue
Tools
woman with duster crinkling nose
Quiz