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Prednisone is a prescription medication used to treat many conditions including:
- low corticosteroid levels (adrenal insufficiency)
- certain types of arthritis
- allergic conditions
- multiple sclerosis
- lupus and other collagen diseases
- other diseases affecting the lungs, skin, eyes, kidneys, blood, thyroid, stomach, and intestines
Prednisone belongs to a group of drugs called corticosteroids, which replace steroids the body normally makes, leading to overall reduction of inflammation and of the immune system.
This medication comes in tablet and oral solution forms and is usually taken one to four times a day or every other day, with food or milk.
Common side effects of prednisone include headache, dizziness, and difficulty falling asleep. Do not drive or operate machinery until you know how prednisone will affect you.
Serious side effects have been reported with prednisone including:
Hypersensitivity reaction: Prednisone may trigger an allergic response. Symptoms of a hypersensitivity reaction include:
- difficulty breathing or swallowing
Cardiac and renal problems: Prednisone can increase blood pressure, cause water and sodium retention, and increase potassium and calcium excretion. Tell your doctor if you have a history of heart or kidney disease.
Corticosteroid deficiency after drug withdrawal: Once you stop taking prednisone, your body’s ability to produce certain steroid hormones may be impaired.
Immunosuppression: Prednisone decreases your body’s immune response to infections. In addition, prednisone can increase sensitivity to vaccines since the immune response is reduced with prednisone use.
Reactivation of tuberculosis: Tell your doctor if you have had tuberculosis.
Ophthalmic (eye) problems: Prednisone can lead to cataracts and glaucoma.
Perforation of the gastrointestinal tract: Prednisone can cause holes in the stomach or intestinal lining. Tell your doctor if you have a history of ulcers or other digestive system problems.
Decreased bone formation: Prednisone can prevent the formation of bones, which may result in decreased bone density and osteoporosis.
Prednisone can cause dizziness. Do not drive or operate heavy machinery until you know how prednisone affects you.
Do not take prednisone if you:
- have a fungal infection
- are allergic to prednisone
Sterapred Food Interactions
Medicines can interact with certain foods. In some cases, this may be harmful and your doctor may advise you to avoid certain foods. In the case of prednisone, there are no specific foods that you must exclude from your diet when receiving prednisone.
Your doctor may suggest a diet low in salt and high in calcium and potassium while taking prednisone.
Before taking prednisone, tell your doctor about all of your medical conditions. Especially tell your doctor if you:
- have thyroid, liver, kidney, or heart disease
- have recently experienced an infection (bacterial, viral, or fungal)
- have recently had or will have a surgical procedure
- have an autoimmune disease like HIV/AIDS
- have had an allergic reaction to prednisone
- have had tuberculosis
- have osteoporosis
- plan to receive a vaccination
- are pregnant or breastfeeding
Tell your doctor about all the medicines you take including prescription and non-prescription medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements.
Sterapred and Pregnancy
Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant. It is not known if prednisone will harm your unborn baby.
- Take prednisone exactly as prescribed.
- This medication comes in tablet and oral solution forms and is usually taken one to four times a day or every other day, with food or milk.
- If prednisone upsets your stomach, you should take the medication along with food or milk.
- If you miss a dose, consult your doctor or pharmacist to determine the appropriate course of treatment. Do not take two doses of prednisone at the same time.
- Store prednisone at room temperature.
- Keep this and all medicines out of the reach of children.
Sterapred (prednisone) side effects
Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficult breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.
Call your doctor at once if you have:
blurred vision, eye pain, or seeing halos around lights;
swelling, rapid weight gain, feeling short of breath;
severe depression, feelings of extreme happiness or sadness, changes in personality or behavior, seizure (convulsions);
bloody or tarry stools, coughing up blood;
pancreatitis (severe pain in your upper stomach spreading to your back, nausea and vomiting, fast heart rate);
low potassium (confusion, uneven heart rate, extreme thirst, increased urination, leg discomfort, muscle weakness or limp feeling); or
dangerously high blood pressure (severe headache, blurred vision, buzzing in your ears, anxiety, confusion, chest pain, shortness of breath, uneven heartbeats, seizure).
Other common side effects may include:
sleep problems (insomnia), mood changes;
increased appetite, gradual weight gain;
acne, increased sweating, dry skin, thinning skin, bruising or discoloration;
slow wound healing;
headache, dizziness, spinning sensation;
nausea, stomach pain, bloating; or
changes in the shape or location of body fat (especially in your arms, legs, face, neck, breasts, and waist).
This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
Advice to Patients
In patients receiving long-term therapy, importance of not discontinuing the drug abruptly.d
Importance of notifying a clinician of any infections, signs of infections (e.g., fever, sore throat, pain during urination, muscle aches), or injuries that develop during therapy or within 12 months after therapy is discontinued.c
Importance of carrying identification cards listing the diseases being treated, the glucocorticoid regimen, and the name and telephone number of the clinician.c
When surgery is required, importance of informing the attending physician, dentist, or anesthesiologist of recent (within 12 months) glucocorticoid therapy.c
Advise patients receiving orally inhaled glucocorticoid therapy who are currently being withdrawn or who have been withdrawn from systemic therapy to immediately resume full therapeutic dosages of systemic glucocorticoids and to contact their clinician for further instructions during stressful periods (e.g., severe infection, severe asthmatic attack).
In immunosuppressed patients, importance of avoiding exposure to certain infections (e.g., chickenpox, measles) and of the importance of obtaining medical advice if such exposure occurs.
Importance of informing clinicians of existing or contemplated concomitant therapy, including prescription and OTC drugs, as well as any concomitant illnesses.a c
Importance of women informing clinicians if they are or plan to become pregnant or plan to breast-feed.a
Importance of informing patients of other important precautionary information.a c (See Cautions.)
Before Using Sterapred
In deciding to use a medicine, the risks of taking the medicine must be weighed against the good it will do. This is a decision you and your doctor will make. For this medicine, the following should be considered:
Tell your doctor if you have ever had any unusual or allergic reaction to this medicine or any other medicines. Also tell your health care professional if you have any other types of allergies, such as to foods, dyes, preservatives, or animals. For non-prescription products, read the label or package ingredients carefully.
Appropriate studies performed to date have not demonstrated pediatric-specific problems that would limit the usefulness of prednisone in children. However, pediatric patients are more likely to have slower growth and bone problems if prednisone is used for a long time. Recommended doses should not be exceeded, and the patient should be carefully monitored during therapy.
Appropriate studies performed to date have not demonstrated geriatric-specific problems that would limit the usefulness of prednisone in the elderly. However, elderly patients are more likely to have age-related liver, kidney, or heart problems, which may require caution and an adjustment in the dose for elderly patients receiving prednisone.
|All Trimesters||D||Studies in pregnant women have demonstrated a risk to the fetus. However, the benefits of therapy in a life threatening situation or a serious disease, may outweigh the potential risk.|
Studies in women suggest that this medication poses minimal risk to the infant when used during breastfeeding.
Interactions with Medicines
Although certain medicines should not be used together at all, in other cases two different medicines may be used together even if an interaction might occur. In these cases, your doctor may want to change the dose, or other precautions may be necessary. When you are taking this medicine, it is especially important that your healthcare professional know if you are taking any of the medicines listed below. The following interactions have been selected on the basis of their potential significance and are not necessarily all-inclusive.
Using this medicine with any of the following medicines is not recommended. Your doctor may decide not to treat you with this medication or change some of the other medicines you take.
- Rotavirus Vaccine, Live
Using this medicine with any of the following medicines is usually not recommended, but may be required in some cases. If both medicines are prescribed together, your doctor may change the dose or how often you use one or both of the medicines.
- Amtolmetin Guacil
- Choline Salicylate
- Ethinyl Estradiol
- Flufenamic Acid
- Mefenamic Acid
- Niflumic Acid
- Nimesulide Beta Cyclodextrin
- Salicylic Acid
- Sodium Salicylate
- Tiaprofenic Acid
- Tolfenamic Acid
Using this medicine with any of the following medicines may cause an increased risk of certain side effects, but using both drugs may be the best treatment for you. If both medicines are prescribed together, your doctor may change the dose or how often you use one or both of the medicines.
Interactions with Food/Tobacco/Alcohol
Certain medicines should not be used at or around the time of eating food or eating certain types of food since interactions may occur. Using alcohol or tobacco with certain medicines may also cause interactions to occur. Discuss with your healthcare professional the use of your medicine with food, alcohol, or tobacco.
Other Medical Problems
The presence of other medical problems may affect the use of this medicine. Make sure you tell your doctor if you have any other medical problems, especially:
- Cataracts or
- Congestive heart failure or
- Cushing's syndrome (adrenal gland problem) or
- Diabetes or
- Eye infection or
- Glaucoma or
- Heart attack, recent or
- Hyperglycemia (high blood sugar) or
- Hypertension (high blood pressure) or
- Infection (eg, bacterial, virus, fungus, or parasite) or
- Mood changes, including depression or
- Myasthenia gravis (severe muscle weakness) or
- Osteoporosis (weak bones) or
- Peptic ulcer, active or history of or
- Personality changes or
- Stomach or intestinal problems (eg, diverticulitis, ulcerative colitis) or
- Thyroid problems or
- Tuberculosis, inactive—Use with caution. May make these conditions worse.
- Fungal infections or
- Herpes simplex eye infection—Should not be used in patients with these conditions.
- Kidney disease—Use with caution. The effects may be increased because of slower removal of the medicine from the body.