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Comment from: 19-24 on Treatment for 6 months - 1 year (Patient) Published: July 27

I loved my life before taking prednisone; now I hate it. I hate every day of my life because of this drug. I had perfect skin before taking prednisone; prednisone changed that; it gave me cystic acne. I asked my doctors what to do. They said it would go away on its own and not do anything. It didn't. Instead, it left scars and ruined my skin. I never had a problem with depression before taking prednisone. Prednisone, however, made me severely depressed. I thought about committing suicide; I tried to commit suicide; I was impulsive and it impaired my thinking. I was manic. It gave me panic attacks severe anxiety. It made the whites of my eyes bright red and they're still bright red, so dry I can no longer wear contacts. It also gave me dry skin, extreme insomnia, profuse sweating, yellow skin (possible liver damage), thyroid disease, increased appetite, weight gain, and slowed healing ability. Regular cuts would scar and not heal properly. Prednisone can thin your skin, making you get cuts and bruises easier--and then, because prednisone inhibits your ability to heal and suppresses your immune system, these cuts, at least for me, leave scars--that's why the scars from the cystic acne are so bad. I never even should have been put on prednisone--it's not a first line treatment for my disease, and I was just diagnosed. Some people never taken it because of its risks and side effects. I wasn't given the option though. I wasn't told about side effects or my treatment options. I was only told it was safe and not to worry about side effects. If I had been told about its side effects, I never would've taken it. With what should have been the first-line treatment, I was able to put my disease in remission on my own. So this drug was completely superfluous, a complete waste; it didn't do anything positive. It only ruined my life. So now, although my disease is finally in remission, it doesn't really matter.

Related Reading: prednisone | acne | scars

Published: August 12

Prednisone is far more dangerous than most illegal drugs. It is one of the most dangerous drugs you could ever take. I HATE it with a passion for what it did to my life. I will NEVER take it again. Side effects experienced: Depression, osteoporosis, diabetes, acne, roid rage, suicidal, mood swings, moon face, shortness of breath, anxiety, dry eyes, purple veins on face, 80lb weight gain, memory loss, loss of muscle, acid reflux, blurry vision, shaky hands, insomnia, frequent urination (sounds minor but is annoying; there is a pill for old men for this "going too often?"; you've seen the commercial), stretch marks, skin atrophy.

Related Reading: prednisone | depression | osteoporosis

Comment from: (Patient) Published: September 22

If anyone tells you prednisone is safe, don't believe them. It's dangerous and an evil drug: it ruined my life. It gave me cystic acne that scarred my skin; I became suicidal and very depressed and my entire personality changed; I became bipolar; I had and still have heart problems from it; I now have thyroid disease; and I have a lot of other problems as well. I really wish I had been assigned a different doctor. When I became sick, I was assigned someone, Anne Sullivan, whose medical interests supposedly are adolescents and chronic disease--and because I was an adolescent with a chronic disease, I suspect that's why I was assigned this doctor. She told me prednisone was safe and not to worry about side effects; I believed her, as I would've believed any doctor. I never would've taken this drug if I knew about the side effects. I started experiencing side effects right away and the doctors denied them--and now they're permanent, because they refused to treat them. Also: prednisone didn't help my disease at all. In fact, just weeks later I was told I was going to die and my mom and I had to drive five hours all the way back to Iowa City, to the University of Iowa Hospital and Clinics, to see my doctor. The reason why I, a teenager, was going to do, however, was related to the stupid advice my doctors in the hospital gave me, not my disease. Basically what I'm saying is find a good doctor; most likely a good doctor won't put you on prednisone unless it's a last resort and you know what you're getting into. Also you should know, once you're on prednisone you can't just abruptly stop taking it or it can kill you. I wasn't told this. I didn't stop taking it--I followed their orders exactly--but some people I'm sure would just stop taking a drug if it gave them bad side effects, particularly teenagers, so it's really pretty bad that I wasn't told I could die if I stopped taking it. I really wish I had stopped taking it though and just taken the risk.

Comment from: AVNmom, 35-44 on Treatment for 1-6 months Published: September 27

My daughter developed osteonecrosis (also known as Avascular Necrosis) (meaning bone death) as a result of this medication. This is not disclosed to the Consumer, but is on the Professional page's adverse side effects. She took this drug for 4 months and she has bone death in her right shoulder, both elbows, wrists, knees, and ankles confirmed with an MRI. If you choose, and I realize some have no choice, to take this drug, watch joints for pain/swelling and DEMAND an MRI because Osteonecrosis will not show up on regular x-ray in its early stages and early diagnosis is essential for early treatment to prevent the collapse of your joints.

Comment from: just dandy, 55-64 on Treatment for less than 1 month (Patient) Published: March 18

A year ago I was in the hospital and was being given Predisone via IV and also taking it orally. In a very few days I was enormous. My face was a moon. I'm still trying to lose the weight. In addition, I had trouble sleeping, being hyper, having some bipolar symptoms and terrible swelling. I realize that one man's trash is another man's treasure, so I can only judge my experiences with the drug. A few days ago my doctor prescribed prednisone 5 pills for 2 days, 4 pills for 2 days, 3 pills for 2 days, etc. I did take the first dose, then realized just what I was doing. I refused to take the rest of the pills. Such a relatively low dose/short term regimen might not have caused any ill effects, but I decided I didn't want to find out. So many of the reviewers here have had much more serious problems to begin with than I, and equally, much more serious adverse reactions to prednisone; however, I felt I needed to speak out about my own experiences and reactions.

Comment from: Puerco, 55-64 Female on Treatment for less than 1 month (Patient) Published: September 18

I'm taking prednisone for probably the 4th time in my life. I've been prescribed it when my asthma gets really severe. I've never taken it for more than 2 weeks at a time. I've always been very happy with the results. One of the side effects that I like is that my 60-year-old body has fewer aches and pains while I'm taking it. I'm on my second day of a 5-day treatment and already my breathing is improving. Because of scarring on my lungs via acid reflux I had a doctor want to put me on this med for a year and a half. After learning of all of the bad side effects I told him no way. 5-14 days is plenty for me and so far hasn't been detimental to my overall health.

Related Reading: prednisone | asthma

Comment from: 3006, 55-64 Female on Treatment for less than 1 month (Patient) Published: February 22

The only time I can smell or breath is when I take predisonebloodpressure dropped to normal best drug ever would take a lll the time if possible

Comment from: MJ, 55-64 on Treatment for 2-5 years (Patient) Published: November 03

I have been on Prednisone for 2 yearsso far. My initial dose was 90 mg/day! Try weaning from that dose! I was (after many, many incorrect diagnoses) finally diagnosed with Temporal Arteritis. It has taken two years of my life. Prednisone is a vile and evil drug. I have been through hell with muscle pain, writhing on the sofa, still taking morphine to even appear to be somewhat "normal", to shower, walk, breathe, raise my head from my pillow. The simple things. My face swelled so much that my eyes were slits, barely able to do their job. I spent almost a year in bed. Missing all holidays, birthdays, family, friends... Was there a choice? No. Did I have good doctors to support me? Yes. Was it my Rheumatologist? No. Was it my Primary Care Dr. who prescribed the 90 mg then no longer wanted to see me? No. It was the love of my life, my Oncologist! Yes! He was by my side and saw me through every ugly event. And there were soooo many! I was also fortunate to have skipped over the mental side effects. I didn't chase my husband with a skillet, threatening to kill him as my girlfriend did. I did keep a good sense of humor. My Neurologist (found about a year too late) has helped me through a lot of the pain in each and every muscle in my body and my head. Topomax was a huge success in that area. It helped to alleviate some of my 700+ day headache and also was effective in helping me loose some of the weight I have gained from Prednisone. So, I guess there is hope. I'm alive, I don't suffer from debilitating headaches, and I'm not blind. I'm unsure of the status of my muscles, tendons and ligaments, bones, teeth, etc. We'll see in the next year or so when, hopefully, this nightmare is over. Good luck to all of you going down this bleak path...

Related Reading: prednisone | morphine | headache

Comment from: on Treatment for less than 1 month Published: October 04

After reading mostly bad comments, I was relieved that short-term use seems to be okay. My son has been given this twice now and I wasn't too sure of the safety. He hates having to swallow these down be cause of the intial taste and really bad after taste!

Comment from: subaruprincess, 25-34 on Treatment for 1-6 months (Patient) Published: September 09

I was very reluctant to take any corticosteroid, as I was worried about side effects. It took more than 10 years of disease activity before I gave in and finally took it. My doctor has prescribed it before, but prior to this year, I had never even filled the prescriptions. I wish I wouldn't have given in. I thought maybe I was blowing the risks out of proportion, as my GI doctor has told me numerous time that I was overreacting, and that the drug was the safest of any. Prior to being treated with prednisone, I had suffered through my symptoms, or taken medication that only controlled my symptoms. I was much happier with both of those options, as miserable as the disease can be. I wasn't depressed before, now I am. I've been off of the steroids a month now, and I still have menstrual bleeding that started 3 months ago when the prednisone was started. It has been nonstop. My doctor said it would stop, and that it was nothing to worry about. Maybe she doesn't feel like having a relationship with her husband, I desperately want one with mine. My skin is now very oily and I have terrible acne. I was told this would go away, but it's getting worse. My vision is blurry still, my eyes are dry and red, and they feel like they are filled with sand. I was told this was caused by my disease, not the drug. My eye doctor disagrees. I was unable to sleep much despite being physically drained the entire time while on the medication. It was awful. Anti-anxiety medications didn't help. I also started having trouble with weakness after starting the medication. It was terrible. I could barely walk to my bedroom. My advice, if your gut feeling is to run from this drug, run, and run fast. I had far less trouble with being on, and coming off of pain medication that I took to control the symptoms of my disease. They said those weren't safe, but I had no ill effects during or after treatment. They should be more cautious in prescribing this this as they are with pain medication.

Related Reading: acne | anxiety


What Is Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA)? Symptoms, Treatment, Diagnosis See Slideshow
Comment from: 65-74 on Treatment for 1-6 months (Patient) Published: July 24

I am a diabetic and the drug prednisone made my blood sugars go in the 400's and bounce all over the place long enough to cause me to have kidney damage from the high sugar levels caused by my taking the stupid prednisone for a 2 month period. It made my face swell up, it made my legs and ankles swell to 3 times their normal size. It made me so hungary all the time and the extra food made my blood sugar worse. The drug did not help my medical problem asthma at all and only caused me more problems, which may be a very serious kidney problem. I was in the hospital this two month period, and I thought they were doing what was best for my health, but that was not the case using this horrible drug Prednisone, I do not believe I should have ever been given this terrible drug. The permanent damage it can do is not worth taking a chance by taking the drug. I hope my information can help someone else, and this drug will not be able to harm their body the way it did mine.

Related Reading: prednisone | asthma

Comment from: Pay it Forward, 55-64 on Treatment for less than 1 month (Patient) Published: July 19

I've been using this to avoid blindness caused by temporal arteritis. I've only used it a short time and it has an excellent effect on my symptoms - and hopefully will save my vision. I appreciate all the comments offered by previous bloggers and will be more vigilant about watching for these side effects and getting second opinions if necessary.

Related Reading: blindness

Comment from: Migraine Sufferer, 45-54 on Treatment for less than 1 month (Patient) Published: October 23

My dr. prescribed 20 mg prednisone twice a day for 5 days after a 25 day 24/7 migraine of various pain levels. I had a toradol injection in her office for the migraine and then started prednisone 36 hours later. the only side effect was some slight dizziness but it didn't affect my daily life like the migraine did. I didn't experience any other side effects. Prednisone alleviated other pains I was having due to fibromyalgia. My body felt pain free. I took my last dose 72 hours ago and still feel pain free. It helped break the pain cycle of my migraines. I would definitely take this medication again and I am not one to take a lot of prescription meds. the only other prescription I take is for a very common thyroid imbalance. I feel bad so many people had such horrible severe experiences with this drug. Maybe my dose was too low to cause any long lasting effects.

Related Reading: toradol | dizziness | fibromyalgia

Comment from: Pepper1311, 65-74 Female on Treatment for 1-2 years (Patient) Published: May 30

Iv been using for years, mostly injections ( multiple at one time) now pills. It seems to work I can walk more then 100 feet without having to sit with pain. I'll guess the side effects are worth it, quality of life is more important at this point in life,age 65.

Comment from: Anonymous, 25-34 on Treatment for less than 1 month (Patient) Published: January 17

I was prescribed Prednisone to determine if I was having an autoimmune reaction. The prednisone helped, it eliminated the issue I was having. The down side is that the side effects were pretty strong. The first day I halved my dose, I experienced hallucinations and spent an afternoon in ER. It also made my face and hands swell, and increased acne. The acne isn't too bad, but it might be worse if I were on the medication longer. Other side effects I've experienced include elevated mood (which was not unpleasant, but not normal), intense pressure in head and eyes, blurry vision and random racing heart rate. I'm ordinarily a very health woman. I work out 5 days a week, eat healthy, sleep 8 hrs a day etc... I think the side effects have been a fair trade for reducing the swelling and pain from the autoimmune disorder. Hopefully won't have to take it again, but if it's needed, it's needed.

Related Reading: prednisone | acne

Comment from: 35-44 on Treatment for 6 months - 1 year (Patient) Published: December 08

Trouble sleeping and anxiety also acne have been a problem although better than the Vasculitis problems.

Related Reading: anxiety | vasculitis

Comment from: mary, 55-64 on Treatment for 5-10 years (Patient) Published: December 31

This drug is a Godsend for me. I have Crohn's colitis and arthritis and also get PG ( a skin reaction) which is a side efect of the Crohn'S. I would do anything to be able to stay on this drug. when I am taking it, I have a life, when I don't my life goes away. When I am taking Prednisone my Crohn's symptoms are gone, I can walk and stand for an increased amount of time. When I am not on this drug I have diarrhea 10 times a day and I can walk or stand for a maximum of 20-30 seconds. I find it ironic that I am on Remicade infusions which cost $5000 each time (every 2 months) which do nothing for me but 20 mg of prednisone daily give me my life back. Yes I do get the moon face and the substantial weight gain but I have a life.

Related Reading: colitis | arthritis | diarrhea

Comment from: applegase, 65-74 on Treatment for less than 1 month (Patient) Published: July 15

I just started to use this 9 days ago. My psoriasis had gotten out of control along with my arthritis. It has been a God send, so far my hands are almost clear and my joints feel better than they have for a long time. I wish I could stay on this.

Related Reading: psoriasis | arthritis

Comment from: sick and tired, 45-54 on Treatment for 2-5 years (Patient) Published: October 16

i have copd,it helps me to breath,but i am alwawys so bad feelng now and my stomach is alwawy pressuring me. im so sick nowi barely care abut it. i tink this medicine is doing it. but i cant breath witout it.

Comment from: karenj, 65-74 on Treatment for less than 1 month (Patient) Published: September 23

skin rash with severe itching

Related Reading: rash

Comment from: skd, Female (Patient) Published: July 01

Fortunately I had minimum of side efeects. Drug worked for my condition.


The term arthritis refers to stiffness in the joints. See Answer

Medical Editor: John P. Cunha, DO, FACOEP

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