Steroids (not the PUMP-YOU-UP type)

I was talking with someone about corticosteroids this last weekend and they said, "Heck No, I would never take prednisone or any other sone type medication.  I've seen what they do to people.  They get all bloated and fat and wide eyed anxious!"  Good point!  I am always for taking as few medications as possible, and working on getting off any that are not completely necessary.  That said, at the correct dose and with appropriate monitoring, corticosteroids definitely have a place for treating acute and chronic inflammatory and immune system conditions.

Corticosteroids are medications very similar to cortisol, which is naturally produced by the body.  Cortisol has many functions such as helping the body use sugar and fat for energy metabolism, while also assisting the body manage stress.  Basically, any physical or mental stress will cause the body to increase production of cortisol to help you manage the situation. 

The human body, amazing as it is, recognizes when it has a high level of corticosteroid in it and stops its own production.  If you took an increased dose of corticosteroid for an extended period of time, usually one month or greater, your body diminishes its ability to begin production of its own cortisol.  This effect is different for each individual and is dependent upon the dose and duration of therapy.  Your doctor will usually diminish the corticosteroid dose gradually in order to allow for the body to begin its own production of cortisol again. 

When someone takes a corticosteroid for an acute situation such as a severe allergic response or inflammatory condition, the dose is usually given for 7-14 days.  The body will temporarily decrease its own production of cortisol, however, as the dose decreases, the body will again begin production of its own cortisol and take over when the dosing cycle is complete.

If someone has taken a corticosteroid in an increased dose for an extended period of time, such as may happen when treating an immune system disorder or cancer, it may take up to 12 months for the body to fully regain its ability to produce normal levels of cortisol after the corticosteroid has been stopped.  Again, this is fully dependent on the dose of the medication and the duration of therapy. 

I am taking the time to explain this because this is a big deal.  This medication works incredibly well at treating certain disease states and conditions, however, it helps to understand how this medication affects your entire system.   If you need to use this medication for a chronic condition, please discuss the effects with your doctor or pharmacist so you understand what to expect.

To learn more about corticosteroid medications such as prednisone, dexamethasone, methylprednisolone or hydrocortisone, please and register to become a member.  You will then have access to the corticosteroid Medication Specific Counseling SessionsTM as well as all of the other counseling sessions. 


Copyright AudibleRx (TM), all rights reserved. Please do not copy or publish or distribute without consent and approval from AudibleRx (TM).