Prednisone Side Effects
It is common for doctors to prescribe Prednisone in cases of inflammation, allergies and such skin issues. Then again, every drug you consume has some unwanted effects along with the desired effects. So does Prednisone. These unwanted effects or Prednisone side effects can vary in terms of criticality, but it is always important you have a know-how of what disorders can this drug cause in your body, and when you should seek medical attention to these disorders. In this post, we are going to take you through some important pointers you need to know about Prednisone and various side effects it can have on people from different walks of life. (1)
What is Prednisone?
Prednisone is a steroid drug which prevents the release of inflammation-causing substances. It is an anti-inflammation drug which suppresses the immune system as well. It is usually a part of your prescription when you are dealing with allergies, swelling, and such disorders.
Prednisone is available as a generic drug and you can get them under certain brand names as well, such as Prednisone Intensol and Rayos. While the generic variants are cheaper, it is difficult to find the generic drugs suitable for the prescribed dosage. You can take Prednisone orally. Immediate-release tablets, delayed-release tablets, and liquid solutions are various forms in which you will find Prednisone. (2)
How does Prednisone Work?
Prednisone is a steroid which is used to cure inflammation, breathing disorders, or more such concerns in the body. Inflammation, i.e. swelling, skin irritation, and redness are a sign of an active immune system. But to cure the inflammation, doctors prescribe Prednisone, which weakens the immune system so that no further skin inflammation occurs.
When should you Consume Prednisone?
Prednisone is a steroid, therefore, it is important to consume it only when prescribed by the doctor. Below are some issues which can be addressed with the consumption of this drug as prescribed by the doctor. (3)
- Asthma and other breathing disorders.
- Allergic reactions.
- Skin inflammation.
- Ulcerative Colitis.
- Lupus or Nephrotic Syndrome
- Endocrine Disorders.
- Multiple Sclerosis.
- Optic Neuritis.
- Particular symptoms of Leukaemia
- Eye Inflammation.
- Optic Neuritis
How can you consume Prednisone?
First of all, you should never deviate from your healthcare professional’s prescription when consuming drugs like Prednisone. Stick to the dosage as prescribed by the doctor. Here are the ways in which you can take Prednisone (4)
- Never crush, chew or break a delayed-release tablet.
- Use a dose-measuring spoon or cup to make sure that you consume the right amount of Prednisone liquid.
- You are more prone to Prednisone side effects when you catch an infection during the course of the treatment. Make sure that you consult the doctor immediately.
- Take Prednisone with food to help your body deal with the heat.
- Go for frequent blood pressure and blood tests to ensure a stable treatment.
- Exercise, consume calcium-rich diet and remain active to avoid certain side effects.
- If you miss a dose, take it in time or skip it if it is already the time for next dose. So not take an extra dose in order to compensate the skipped dose. Overdose can lead to severe side effects.
- Store the drugs at room temperature, away from moisture and heat.
- Make sure that you wear an alert ID card when visiting a doctor so that he knows that you are on Prednisone.
How to know if Prednisone is working?
Decreased swelling and skin irritation is the primary indication that your body has accepted the drug and it is working. Prednisone is an anti-inflammation drug which suppresses the immune system to reduce the allergies and other inflammations in your body.
Prednisone Side Effects (Consumption Concerns)
The consumption of Prednisone should be strictly according to your healthcare professional’s prescriptions. Prednisone side effects can be dire if you ignore the following concerns:
- As Prednisone is a steroid, it has direct effect on your immune system. It suppresses the immune system and makes it weak. If you are undergoing any treatment which includes Prednisone, do not go near people who are suffering with communicable diseases such as Chicken Pox and Measles.
- Prednisone side effects can prove deadly if you have a fungal infection in any part of your body. Always discuss all prior infections with your doctor beforehand. These infections can be:
- Fever, influenza, or body aches.
- Symptoms of diarrhoea.
- Liver disease
- Kidney disease
- Thyroid disorder
- Thyroid disorder.
- History of Malaria.
- Herpes, glaucoma or cataract in the eye.
- Stomach ulcers.
- Muscle disorders.
- Depression or Mental Illness.
- Follow the prescription for effective results and if any issues arise, do not discontinue the drug immediately, consult the doctor and put a gradual halt to Prednisone consumption.
- Live vaccines is a big no when you are on Prednisone.
- Do not drink alcohol when you are on Prednisone.
Prednisone Side Effects with Live Vaccines
Make sure that you do not take any Live Vaccine while you are on a Prednisone prescription. This is so because the aim of vaccines is to inject the disease-causing germs in the body in order to help the immune system develop proper defences against it. Prednisone, as we know, weakens the immune system. Therefore, it will be a bad decision to introduce the immune system to a new set of viruses or bacteria when it is off-guard. Confirm with your doctor beforehand to know whether the vaccination you are going for is a live vaccine.
Some Common Prednisone Side Effects
Prednisone belongs to a class of steroids known as corticosteroids. Like every drug we consume, Prednisone also has certain undesired effects upon the body. Some of these effects are mild and will disappear as soon as your body learns to adjust with the drug. If not, you can consult your doctor to alter the dosage which will relieve you from the following common side-effects of Prednisone:
- Trouble in falling asleep
- Dehydration or decrease in amount of urine.
- Frequent headaches
- Sudden weight gain and increased appetite
- Nausea, stomach bloating, and vomiting
- Mood swings. Extremely low spirit or sudden mood elevation
- Noisy or troubled breath
- Irregular heartbeat
- Numb or tingling limbs
- Pounding or buzzing sound in ears
- Blurry vision, mild ache in the eye region, and seeing irregular halos around light
- Unstable blood pressure
Serious Prednisone Side Effects
Well, you have to give your body some time to adjust with the drug to deal with the above side-effects of Prednisone. They are not as severe as the ones we are now going to introduce you to. If these side effects are not addressed in time, they can lead to permanent damage to organs or even prove deadly. Below, you will find Prednisone side effects long term so that you can seek help from your healthcare professional in time.
- Coughing up blood, bloody or tarry stool
- Chest pain and sudden cramps in the chest
- High fluctuations in blood pressure.
- Thickening or thinning of blood.
- Weakening of eyesight
- Severe allergic reactions
- Spinning sensations in the head.
- Gradual mood swings which lead to depression
- Increase in blood sugar which might lead to diabetes.
- Infections such as Urine infection, fever, cough, and sore throat.
Prednisone Side effects on Skin
Apart from tingling and numbness in the limbs, Prednisone effects the skin in various ways. You might experience acne, accelerated sweating, thinning of skin, dry skin, easy bruising and slight skin discoloration. Plus, if you get wounded during the course of the treatment, it will take longer for the wounds to heal.
Prednisone treatment also effects your body shape as the appetite increases, therefore, the body weight shoots up suddenly. The new fat in the body does not get enough time to spread across the body and hence, it gets deposited in certain parts of the body like arms, legs, stomach, waist, or neck, making the body shape uneven.
Therefore, it is important to keep a strict check on the diet, exercise regularly, and live an active lifestyle when you take Prednisone treatment. This will help you keep your weight in check, bones healthy, and give you a nourished skin.
Prednisone Side Effects in Men
Usually, the side effects of prednisone on men are common side effects, which are encountered by everyone in general. They can be normal or severe in nature. Plus, the drug is used to treat the same issues in men as they are used to treat other people. Then again, there are certain side effects which are unique to men. One major prednisone side effect in men is that affects the sperm count and its movement. The effect can be positive, i.e. the drug can increase the count or it can be negative, i.e. it can reduce it severely.
Despite the effect it has on the sperm count in men, do not confuse it with anabolic steroids which are used to build muscles artificially and can lead to shrunken testicles, decreased sperm count, and even impotence in some cases.
Prednisone Side effects in Women
Women play the most intricate role in the process of reproduction and for that their body goes through multiple internal and external changes. Therefore, they should take more precautions and consult every possible detail with the healthcare professional before going for Prednisone.
Rayos is a brand variant of Prednisone, which is a delayed-release category D pregnancy drug. It means that the drug is expected to have adverse effects on pregnancy if an expecting mother consumes the drug. Pregnant women should only go for these drugs when the condition is dangerous and the treatment cannot be conducted without it.
The immediate-release tablet is a category C Pregnancy drug. It means, the drug has been tested on animals and has shown ill-effects on the foetuses. Though there hasn’t been enough research done on humans, then again, the results are not expected to be very different.
Women, if are pregnant or are planning to get pregnant, should weigh the risks and results associated with the treatment and discuss them with their doctor thoroughly before taking Prednisone.
For Women who are breastfeeding
If you are past pregnancy but you are breastfeeding, you should be equally careful about Prednisone consumption. This is so because the drug can easily be passed to the infant through breastmilk and affects its health and growth. The infant’s mental as well as physical growth can face adverse side effects of the drug. Therefore, consult the doctor if the treatment is necessary, else avoid the consumption of Prednisone when breastfeeding.
Prednisone Side Effects in Children
In their growing years, children are more prone to side effects of drugs like Prednisone. Therefore, it is very important to regulate the dosage of Prednisone in children in a regular manner. Keeping a check on the growth rate of children under Prednisone treatment is very important because it effects the height and the children are not able to grow as tall. The mental development of children can also get affected if proper changes in dosage are not made with time.
Children suffering from asthma, skin allergies, swelling, and other such issues have prescribed the drug.
Prednisone Side Effects in Elderly
Prednisone is first processed in the liver and then is passed out through the kidney. It requires these organs to work extra hard so that the toxins released by the drug do not remain in the body. These organs of elderly people are already weak and hence it is advised that they begin the treatment involving Prednisone with smaller dosages. The dosage can be increased with time as the body and organs adjust to the drug. If the toxins are not released, and they remain in the body, the side effects can take an adverse shape. The old age might make it all the more difficult to treat the side effects caused by Prednisone.
Now that you know what Prednisone Side Effects long term can be, you can seek your doctor’s advice and address all your concerns.