What Are The Differences Between Vistaril And Xanax?
Xanax, a trade name for the generic drug alprazolam, is an anxiolytic benzodiazepine and a minor tranquilizer. It creator, Upjohn Inc. initially sold the drug as a treatment for panic disorders. By 2010, it became the most prescribed and abused benzodiazepine in the market. (1)
Vistaril, a drug with the generic name of Hydroxyzine, is an antihistamine under diphenylmethane and piperazine drug class. The Belgian pharmaceutical company Union Chimique Belge created the drug in 1956. Afterwards, it was then introduced by Pfizer in the US during the same year.
Uses Of Xanax And Vistaril
Both Xanax and Vistaril have shown potent anxiolytic properties. This means that they have the ability to treat various types of anxiety. Furthermore, some studies have proven that Vistaril is equally as effective as benzodiazepine drugs such as Xanax in treating generalized anxiety disorders.
However, Xanax is still preferred due to the lack of sufficient research to back the use of Vistaril for such use. Nevertheless, the former’s use for anxiety is quite promising. Lastly, Vistaril and Xanax can treat some disorders that the other cannot.(2)
Listed below are some uses exclusive to each drug:
- Antihistamine: Physicians primarily prescribe Vistaril for the treatment of different types of allergy most of which are skin related. Some allergies that Vistaril can cure include chronic histamine-mediated pruritus, atopic or contact dermatitis, and urticaria.
- Tranquilizer: Dentists, not doctors, commonly use Vistaril to treat pain during procedures. Preferably, it is used alongside other opioids due to its ability to lessen some side effects caused by opioid pain medications.
- Panic Disorders: The FDA initially approved Xanax for the treatment of panic disorders. The World Federation of Societies of Biological Psychiatry recommends it for the treatment of panic disorders only to patients with no history of addiction, or dependence.
- Chemotherapy- induced Nausea: Some physicians prescribe Xanax to reduce the incidence or severity of nausea in patients that are undergoing chemotherapy.
Side Effects Of Xanax And Vistaril
The Food and Drug Administration categorized Xanax as a Schedule IV drug due to its minimal abuse potential. Though its abuse potential is low, Xanax became the target of many recreational users due to its accessibility and affordability.
Prolonged use of the drug, even if used according to prescription, can still lead to addiction. Other common side effects of Xanax include cognitive impairment, ataxia, drowsiness, constipation, fatigue, insomnia, and more.
Vistaril, meanwhile, is relatively safer than most psychoactive drugs. Studies have shown that it exhibits only a few less dangerous side effects such as incoordination, deep sleep, calmness, sedation, and dizziness. Furthermore, unlike Xanax, the FDA has considered Vistaril as a non-addictive drug.
Also Read: Etizolam Vs Xanax
Effect On Pregnant Women
A study on the teratogenic effect of benzodiazepines like Xanax found out that there is a minimal probability that the fetus will experience long-term adverse effects. The same result appeared in babies that were ingesting breast milk from a mother taking this drug regardless of the duration that has passed since ingestion. (3)
The Australian government has placed Vistaril in category A with regards to pregnancy. This means that there is virtually no danger in taking it while pregnant. However, the US FDA decided to place it under category C due to animal studies demonstrating some adverse effects caused by the drug to unborn fetuses. Nevertheless, not enough human studies have been done to prove the same on human fetuses.
Can Xanax And Vistaril Be Taken Together?
Taking Xanax and Vistaril together is relatively safe to do. However, there have been reports of the combination causing severe drowsiness. Hence, it is highly unadvisable to take the two drugs together if you intend to engage in activities that require mental awareness. This includes driving, operating machinery, and more.
Lastly, Combination of drugs can have varying effects depending on the person taking it. Furthermore, some variables can cause the side effects of each drug to intensify. Thus, it is best that you first consult your physician before taking any two drugs at the same time.