I responded to your other message. But, I think I forgot to answer one of your questions. How do the oral steroids help...
Since cortico steroids are anti-inflammatory, when they stop abruptly in your body, things get inflamed. That can cause stiffness in the joints and pains in your body. The oral steroids put back a bit of the anti-inflammatory substance, so it eases joint pain. I get a pretty bad headache afterward too, so the prednisone helps with that. It's like putting oil on a creaky hinge.
But, the side effects of the oral prednisone are worse than the IV, I think. That is why I don't like the idea of your dr giving you such a looooooong dosage. Steroids are no good for the rest of your body, especially your liver, which has to filter all that poison out of your bloodstream. And to the best of my knowledge, short bursts of high dosages are easier for your body to take, than extended lower dosages.
It used to be much more common to treat actual MS symptoms with oral steroids, but that has fallen out of favor. Doctors are now doing more IV because of the decreased side effects, and blasting effect of doing the IV. Your stomach lining can only take so much prednisone before it gets ulcers and breaks down. Plus, a lot of the medication gets processed by the digestive system, and is therefore lost. When it goes straight into the bloodstream, it bypasses all the breaking down effects of your stomach and intestines.
If you are feeling okay, you might consider setting your own schedule for the taper. Maybe try two days at each dose, instead of a whole week. You will feel each decrease, and probably feel like crap. It is going to happen at some point, so why prolong it? Get it over with.
I was so glad to read that the IV helped with your actual MS symptoms. Why suffer more because of the medication? It has done its job, now it's time to get all the artifical stuff out of your body.
Thank you sooo much!!!! I decreased by one 2 days earlier than scheduled, and today, I think I'll kick it back one more. I normally always do what the doc says, but in this case, I'm going to do what my body says, with help from all of you. Thanks for the advice!!!! Hope you're doing well. Sue