Patient Comments: Steroid Drug Withdrawal -Symptoms

What symptoms did you experience with steroid drug withdrawal?

Comment from: Lynda, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: October 13

I have recently stopped prednisone for the first time since 1993. I also had pulse prednisone of up to 4 g (yes, grams) on top of oral prednisone up to 150 mg per day. I have CNS (central nervous system) lupus. I am tired and despite trying very hard, I seem unable to lose any weight. I just read about HPAA (hypothalamic-pituitary adrenal) and will discuss this issue with my doctor.

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Comment from: Chris, 55-64 Male (Patient) Published: January 06

I was on prednisone for 10 days to relieve severe lower back inflammation as I cannot take NSAIDS (I am on blood thinners). Wow! That worked better than any pain killer I've ever used for my back pain. And being in my 60s, I have all kinds of joint pains elsewhere, which also disappeared while on this drug. It was wonderful! I felt like I was 30 again. But then the end came. I know I can't take it all the time, but it made me feel so like I want to feel. Able to do things, freedom from pain, full of energy. I really miss it. Except for one thing. After I stopped, I seem to have developed asthma. I had asthma all my life, but only when I got within 30 feet of hay, so it never bothered me after early childhood because I knew what to avoid. Now I'm having 2 or 3 asthma attacks a day, and no hay anywhere near me. I can't find any reference to this withdrawal symptom, so thought I'd mention it.

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Comment from: Js1747, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: October 03

I am currently tapering off prednisone after being on it at varying doses (up to 60 mg) for several years due to Crohn's disease. My doctor has me decreasing by just 1 mg every 1 to 2 weeks. The longer you are on steroids the harder it is for your adrenal glands to figure out that they have to do the work again, so he says. I'm told that until your adrenal glands are making cortisol again, you may experience withdrawal that can be made worse by stress since your adrenals make more cortisol in response to stress. Regardless of how slowly I am tapering, I am experiencing horrible fatigue and muscle and joint pain. I am also irritable and my hormones are all screwed up; my period starts and stops and I have pimples. I also get lightheaded when I stand up sometimes. I can't wait for this to be over.

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Comment from: sirene1127, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: September 24

I take prednisone for lupus (SLE), and sacroiliitis. I have been on 10 mg for 5 years. This past month I got the wrong pills for my prescription and for 30 days I took 20 mg daily. My rheumatologist has me tapering back to 10 mg and I am experiencing extreme fatigue and irritability. It is the moodiness and irritability that affects me more than the fatigue.

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Comment from: CR, 65-74 Male (Patient) Published: August 13

I was on 40 mg per day of prednisone for only 10 days to treat a blocked sinus. I stopped taking prednisone abruptly. The second day after stopping, I woke up very groggy, with blurred vision and light headedness. When the symptoms did not go away during the morning, I checked my blood pressure (BP) and found that it was 20 points lower (100/55) on both numbers for what is normal for me. My BP kept jumping around. I went to the emergency room (ER) and was given a 20 mg dose of prednisone and sent home with a prescription for 10 mg for the next three days. Today, I am having body and muscles aches.

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Comment from: PERICARDITIS, 75 or over Male (Patient) Published: July 14

I was treated for four months with prednisone, which induced hyperglycemia, for which I had to be placed on insulin I had also an increase in blood pressure readings. But what is worse is when I discontinued the prednisone have had many symptoms, mostly CNS (central nervous system), blurred vision, aches and pains, severe weakness, insomnia (more than the one produced by the prednisone itself), and panic attacks that I never had before in my life. Definitely withdrawal of prednisone is worse than the benefits.

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