I have always had a love-hate relationship with prednisone.
I don’t like to be on it. I was miserable when I was on it all the time, but not being on it, my pain significantly increased.
I was really stubborn, though, and when I was on prednisone on an “as needed” basis, I probably only took it once a month.
The last time I was at my rheumatologist’s, he suggested going back on steroids full time, but rather than putting me back on prednisone, he suggested that I try methylprednisolone.
He told me that while prednisone is the go-to, default steroid in the United States, methylprednisolone is the default in Europe.
You might think a steroid is a steroid , because that is sort of what I thought, too, but my experience suggests otherwise.
A cursory search of PubMed, using the search term “prednisone” reveals 43,591 results and using the search term “methylprednisolone” reveals...
Prednisone. It’s a double-edged sword. This medication can be an excellent tool to address rheumatoid arthritis (RA) flares, as well as a host of other medical conditions. When a bad flare has sidelined you, prednisone can help you to quickly get back on your feet.
On the other hand, the side effects can be a trip down the rabbit hole. Insomnia, increased appetite (and subsequent weight gain), dizziness, rapid heartbeat, and a host of other physiological side effects. And then there’s the psychological side effects. Prednisone ‘roid rage can turn some people from a mild mannered Dr. Jekyll into a raving Mr. Hyde. Irritability, aggressiveness, anxiety, mania, and depression. The higher the dose, the more intense the effects can be. It’s no wonder people in the RA community have given prednisone the nickname Satan’s Tic-Tacs!
Image credit: Alexandr Rozhkov
Given that prednisone can sometimes be a necessary part of treating RA, how do yo...
Hello Everyone! I just wanted to say that although prednisone can be a double edged sword, and it can cause big problems if used at high dosages for a long period of time............I AM SO THANKFUL FOR THIS DRUG. It has helped me out of the dark abyss Lene talks about and back into the light.
Hope everyone is doing well.
Wishing you all many blessings,
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