1) Am I just reading/hearing the bad news? Are people on Pred with little to no side effects?
I was on a pretty short course of pred (40, then 30, then 20, then 15mg for five days each, then 10mg for about 10 days, then 10mg every other day for about two weeks) and the only side effect I had was a bit of moonface and a slight case of the munchies.
2) Is three weeks short enough not to get dependent on it?
I don't think being steroid dependent is affected by how long you are on it, but rather, how bad your inflammation is. I could be wrong, though.
3) Should I switch to Asacol (tried Lialda and didn't work) or some of the other 5-ASAs first?
Asacol and Lialda are fairly similar. Since your inflammation is limited to the lower part of your colon, you might try Colazol, as it starts dissolving lower down, and you therefore might get more med to that lower part of the colon.
4) What if I stay with my current regimen and tough it out?
I guess that's an option, but you might not get any better.
What about steroid or 5-ASA enemas or suppositories?
Symptoms began in November 2008, ~4 weeks after giving birth to my son.
Eased for ~3 weeks in December, possibly b/c of probiotic use?
Returned in January 2009 (with a vengeance), diagnosed with pancolitis on January 30.
Currently taking Asacol (400mg 4 pills 3x daily), Rowasa nightly, Culturelle probiotic, and Zoloft (25 mg).