methylprednisolone, Medrol, Depo-Medrol, Solu-Medrol (cont.)

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Important psychic disturbances may include:

Prolonged use of methylprednisolone can depress the ability of the body's adrenal glands to produce corticosteroids. Abruptly stopping methylprednisolone in these individuals can cause symptoms of corticosteroid insufficiency, with accompanying nausea, vomiting, and even shock. Therefore, withdrawal of methylprednisolone usually is accomplished by gradually lowering the dose. Gradually tapering methylprednisolone not only minimizes the symptoms of corticosteroid insufficiency, it also reduces the risk of an abrupt flare of the disease being treated.

Methylprednisolone and other corticosteroids can mask signs of infection and impair the body's natural immune response to infection. Patients on corticosteroids are more susceptible to infections and can develop more serious infections than individuals not on corticosteroids. For example, chickenpox and measles viruses can produce serious and even fatal illnesses in patients on high doses of methylprednisolone. Live virus vaccines, such as smallpox vaccine, should be avoided in patients taking high doses of methylprednisolone since even vaccine viruses may cause disease in these patients. Some infectious organisms, such as tuberculosis (TB) and malaria, can remain dormant in patients for years. Methylprednisolone and other corticosteroids can allow these infections to reactivate and cause serious illness. Patients with dormant TB may require anti-TB medications while undergoing prolonged corticosteroid treatment.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 1/2/2015

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