- Rheumatoid Arthritis Slideshow Pictures
- Joint-Friendly Exercises to Reduce RA Pain Slideshow
- Take the RA Quiz
- Find a local Rheumatologist in your town
- What are steroids?
- How are steroids given?
- How do steroids work?
- What conditions are treated with steroids?
- What are the benefits of steroids?
- Why are steroids injected?
- What conditions (including arthritis) are treated with steroid injections?
- What are the expected benefits of steroid injections?
- What role do steroid injections play in an overall treatment program?
- When should steroid injections not be used?
- What side effects are associated with steroid injections?
- What are the possible side effects of oral steroids?
- Does everyone develop side effects to steroids?
- How can the side effects be minimized?
- Who should not take steroids?
- How do I know if steroid treatment is right for me?
Quick GuideRheumatoid Arthritis Symptoms and Treatment
What Side Effects Are Associated With Steroid Injections?
Steroid injections are one of the most effective ways to decrease pain and improve function, yet they generally do not cure the illness.
In rare instances, the following side effects might occur:
- Allergic reactions
- Bleeding into the joint
- Rupture of a tendon
- Skin discoloration
- Weakening of bone, ligaments, and tendons (from frequent, repeated injections into the same area)
Not everyone will develop side effects and side effects vary from person to person. If steroid injections are infrequent (less than every three to four months), it is possible that none of the listed side effects will occur.
What Are the Possible Side Effects of Oral Steroids?
Side effects are more common with a higher dose and longer treatment. Side effects are much more common with oral drugs. Some side effects are more serious than others. Common side effects of oral steroids include:
- Blurred vision
- Cataracts or glaucoma
- Easy bruising
- Difficulty sleeping
- High blood pressure
- Increased appetite, weight gain
- Increased growth of body hair
- Lower resistance to infection
- Muscle weakness
- Nervousness, restlessness
- Stomach irritation or bleeding
- Sudden mood swings
- Swollen, puffy face
- Water retention, swelling
- Worsening of diabetes
Please note: The side effects listed are the most common side effects. All possible side effects are not included. Always contact your doctor if you have questions about your personal situation.