Discussions that mention prednisone

Arthritis board


Prior to starting the methotrexate my doctor is putting me on prednisone at a dosage higher than I have ever taken. Starting with 8 per day. Has anyone ever taken this high of a dosage? Any side effects?
Hi Grana,

I have been on 40 mg per day for about 1-2 months, then tapered off slowly over about 8 months. (there are others, though that have taken much higher doses than me) For myself anyway, I didn't notice that I had any side effects, except that I felt normal again. No pains anywhere in my body & all my energy was back, all swelling disappeared, my shoes got looser and I able to wear my "cute" shoes again! . I was able to exercise again, lost some appetite, and actually lost some weight! But from what I know & from what other's have experienced, this was NOT the norm, especially at the dose I was on. And each time my dosage was tapered down, I had a flare up for about a week or so.

Usually the smaller the dose, the less time you're taking it, the better and the less side effects. However, some people can't tolerate pred at all. Everyone reacts differently.

What dosage, for how long, and for what ..have you taken prednisone in the past? Did you have any effects then?
Grana, i'm sorry you had that bad reaction : (
I have a friend who had the same kind of side effects from the pred and she said she'll never take it again. Just be very careful if your chest area feels that tight. If something doesnt seem right...please go to the ER anyway as you don't want to take a chance of something bad happening. I wish I could give you some other advice about your swelling & what meds might not give such bad reactions. It's just that everyone reacts differently. I guess i'm kind of lucky that when I took that much, I had no side effects and felt great. Prednisone can be a miracle drug for many (when it works with them), but then again it can almost be your own worst enemy (especially long term or if you have bad effects from it). I'll keep you in my thoughts and hope that your side effects subside enough to not cause you to have to go to the ER.
Well thanks to the intervention of my internist the rheumatologist has decided to forego the methotrexate since it has the capability of clostridium difficile infection which I have been fighting feverishly since 2001. They are weaning me off the prednisone now slowly and want to try other inflammatory agents (voltaren) in hopes of finding one that my stomach can handle. Due to the other infection my stomach is horrible at handling most anything without horrible effects. If the voltaren and another one which I can not remember the name of work then he said it will be off to the next plateau past methotrexate which will be enbrel or humira or remicade. He says it will be a real fight with insurance company since methotrexate is not being tried but with my history they will be forced to pay it. I am breathing a little easier now because I was terrified of reinfection of the clostridium bacteria! I almost died on 5 occasions from that bug which was brought about by too many antibiotics when I had an abdominal abscess in 2001. It was worse than any sickness I have ever experienced and I would prefer death to having it again. Here's hoping we can find something that will work. The prednisone finally started really helping with the pain and swelling.....just in time to start weaning off........figures!
Chell- I am from South Carolina in the US. Thanks for letting me know about that med and I will ask doctor about it. As the prednisone dosage is being reduced the symptoms are slowly coming back so therefore I know the pain is on its way! Insurance is a big problem in the US for many people and lots of red tape to get all the treatments you need. I take my last dose of prednisone in two days and then start on voltaren for one last try prior to the stronger stuff. After reading about the humira, enbrel, remicade etc it kinda scares you of the potential for lymphoma and other problems. However, I can not continue on this way........hardly can walk at times.
Quote from Grana:
Chell- I am from South Carolina in the US. Thanks for letting me know about that med and I will ask doctor about it. As the prednisone dosage is being reduced the symptoms are slowly coming back so therefore I know the pain is on its way! Insurance is a big problem in the US for many people and lots of red tape to get all the treatments you need. I take my last dose of prednisone in two days and then start on voltaren for one last try prior to the stronger stuff. After reading about the humira, enbrel, remicade etc it kinda scares you of the potential for lymphoma and other problems. However, I can not continue on this way........hardly can walk at times.




Hey Grana
I know all about hardly being able to walk at times I get severe pain andmuscular spasms in my back and literally am hunched over if i have to walk at all, I can only go very short distances up straight on a good day ad my back also swells up it makes it hard to stand up straight, Ive a very severe form of PSA where all my joints are affected and the disease, pain swelling basically alll the symptoms are totally out of control,even on predenisole (ive been on it since may and every time we drop the dose to under 15 mg i flare so Im between 20 to 40mg)
I have literally cut the below paragraph from my newest post from PSA section it explains what is going on with me right now:


Its 1.25am now Ive spent the past hour getting sick after taking MTX earlier tonight Im after more antiemetics (things to stop you vomiting) and its finally stopped im sitting in bed now feeling miserable and in pain but should feel better in about 15mins Im just havin a fentanyl (stronger than morphine!!!) lollipop there called actiq Ive been started on them today as im having a bad flare and could hardly walk nearly all my joints are afftected when i flare unfortunately,went to see my rheumatologist today and she thought I was very bad so she gave me the highest dose steroid injection into my a*s and thats helped my hands a good bit but they still hurt its just im able to move them again so its definately brought down some of the swelling but my toes ankles and knees are still very swollen and my lower back, but its brought down my finger and wrist swellin and one of my elbows is less swollen and my jaw has gone down a bit but im still rather uncomfortable.

Basically the outcome of my meeting with SineƔd my rheumy was, the highest dose steroid injection into my butt, deciding better breakthrough painrelief was needed so we got onto the pain sprecialist and he said hes give me the actiq lollipops, my oral steroids are increrased too, my MTX was increased to17.5mg today then up to 20mg next week,and then after 3 weeks at 20mg if im not too bad I can reduce oral steroids by 2.5mg,and ive to let them no how im getting on and im to ring next week if Im not much better after the week, so please god I will be.and we decided today that if in the new year im still having daily small flares and the many big flares and i cant get down off the steroids then its time to change my medication, but i can go up to 25mg of the MTX before then.

Im suffering from active depression and struggling to cope, especially when Ive just spent an hour vomiting from the MTX, its a horrible drug but works well for some, Humira and the other biologics have many side effects i know but Humira is a god send i know a few fellow sufferers on it one being my pain specialist and they have virtually no symptoms, very occasional pain and feel overall much better, i would love to qualify to be put on it as from what Ive seen is amazing, it gives you your life back, like my pain specialist is also an anaesathist(??spelling) in a busy university hospital and has his life back and a great quality of life, so dont worry too much i know its natural to worry a bit just keep in mind it could be the start of a great new period in your life.
Can i ask how old you are and for how long are you suffering??
Im 20 and have definately had PSA since my early teens but it only became severe in Febuary this year when i was diagnosed offically as PSA and not juvenille arthritis, and since then its gone down hill, I flare really badly when my other illnesses flare up to so I imagine yours would too.

Do you use heat pads?? I find tehm great teh electric ones or wheat bags
I also use a gel called biofreeze its great to cool down hot and swollen joints and it numbs them a bit also Im not sure if its available over there.

Hope too hear from you soon
Chell xxxx :wave: :wave: :wave: :D :D
I live about 15 minutes from MCG.......who is the rheumatologist? I am going to Don Loebl who use to be at MCG. I just can't find a drug that does not make me feel horrible........worse than the pain it seems. My pain is primarily in my feet and ankles and occasional back. I can not take MX due to having clostridium difficile and danger of reinfection. The prednisone I thought would kill me but at lower dosage I did okay and it did help. I just can't stay on it due to the other condition. They now have tried voltaren which makes me so tired I can hardly move across the floor and makes me have continual hot flashes to the point I can not sleep. It also affects my vision. I am so sick of all this I could scream but have to do something due to feet being so swollen and painful.

Chells- I am 56 years old and truthfully have not lived a normal life since turning 50........It is horrible. I am so sorry you are so young and going through all this.
I've had three livertransplant in 31 days when I was at age 12 years old.(I'm 22 years old now) Been on Prednisone since I was 7 yrs old and still on it. Prednisone didn't give me any side effects, it all depends on the person. I'm sorry to hear what happen to you, I really hope you will get feeling better. Keep us updated!

Hope you feel a lot better...

God Bless You!

Cassbugs