Prednisone is used to treat a variety of diseases in our chronic illness community, from arthritis to multiple sclerosis to asthma, among others, so if you’re reading this chances are you’ve experienced this common drug. While prednisone is known for being helpful in reducing inflammation, it’s also known for the range of side effects it can cause, like weight gain (particularly in the face, causing “moon face”), difficulty sleeping and mood swings. (Though if you haven’t taken prednisone yet, don’t panic! Everyone’s reaction to prednisone is different and not everyone experiences severe side effects.) Prednisone’s side effects typically improve once you stop taking the drug, but for those weeks or months you are taking it, and if you’re on a long-term dose or dealing with long-term after-effects, it can be tough. You might feel like there’s no one around who really understands what you’re going through. So we asked our Mighty community to share a photo that shows what prednisone was like for them. my whole body is a little more swollen while on low dose steroids for my interstitial cystitis, irritable bowel syndrome and lymphocytic colitis. If you’ve been on prednisone or are on it now, hopefully these warriors’ experiences will help you feel a part of a community who supports you and your experiences. Because of my smaller frame, I can see and feel myself poofing up quite a bit more than usual. Prednisone provides relief for inflamed areas of the body. It is used to treat a number of different conditions, such as inflammation (swelling), severe allergies, adrenal problems, arthritis, asthma, blood or bone marrow problems, endocrine problems, eye or vision problems, stomach or bowel problems, lupus, skin conditions, kidney problems, ulcerative colitis, and flare-ups of multiple sclerosis. Prednisone is a corticosteroid (cortisone-like medicine or steroid). It works on the immune system to help relieve swelling, redness, itching, and allergic reactions. In deciding to use a medicine, the risks of taking the medicine must be weighed against the good it will do. 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.
Jody Braverman is a professional writer and editor based in Atlanta, GA. She received a Bachelor of Arts in English from the University of Maryland, and she is a certified personal trainer, fitness nutrition specialist, and yoga teacher. View Full Profile Prednisone side effects, including weight gain, are dose-dependent, according to a 2009 study in Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases. She has written for various online and print publications, including Livestrong.com, SFGate, Healthfully, and Although any dose could potentially cause weight gain, doses of 5 mg or more per day were most likely to cause an increase in weight. Your diet is a very powerful tool when it comes to fighting weight gain while on prednisone. To reduce fluid retention, UCSF recommends reducing your sodium intake and increasing your potassium intake. Eating too much salt raises your blood sodium level and makes it hard for your kidneys to remove excess fluids. The electrolyte mineral potassium helps flush sodium out of the body to create a more balanced environment and reduce fluid retention. She is a former managing editor for custom health publications, including physician journals. She has written for The Associated Press and "Jezebel," "Charleston," "Chatter" and "Reach" magazines. Nall is currently pursuing her Bachelor of Science in Nursing at the University of Tennessee. View Full Profile Weight gain with prednisone often is related to how long you have been taking the medication and how much you are taking, according to the University of California San Francisco Medical Center. This is because taking prednisone can increase your appetite. Also, your body retains more fluid while taking prednisone, causing you to experience water retention and swelling. If you have an inflammatory condition that may restrict movement, this can mean you are inactive for a period of time, resulting in added weight gain. Taking prednisone over a long period of time can decrease your adrenal gland production of steroids.
Apr 16, 2012. On another day I will write about how we reflect on our own story in. 5 Things We Can Do About Weight Gain When Taking Prednisone. Corticosteroids and Weight Gain What You Need to Know. more than 7.5 milligrams of prednisone per day for more than 60 days were more.