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New Member

Date Joined Sep 2009
Total Posts : 19
   Posted 2/17/2011 9:32 PM (GMT -7)   
ok, so my doctor just told me i need to go on prednisone for about a month - but reading about this drug, and hearing all the side effects you all have gone through im waayyy to scared to take it. i dont know what to do. weighing in all the side effects is it really even worth it to take it? i just want to know what good does this drug do for you? im really thinking about refusing to take this med.
i need some advice- thanks shakehead

Regular Member

Date Joined Jan 2011
Total Posts : 63
   Posted 2/17/2011 9:36 PM (GMT -7)   
prednisone usually works miracles for me, i notice it relatively quick... within 24 hours.... you should be fine if you are only taking it for a month... i have had times where i get no side effects at all, everyone responds differently.... my advice would be to take it if you are experiencing a flare up... i also find the sooner i notice a flare up coming on and taking prednisone the better.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 3231
   Posted 2/17/2011 10:59 PM (GMT -7)   
Prednisone will buy you time. If you need time for find something that works for you, then prednisone will do the job. However, it's not a long-term solution. It comes with too many side effects, side effects that aren't always noticeable.

As for me, I only took it when my colon was in danger of bursting.

Elite Member

Date Joined May 2003
Total Posts : 29840
   Posted 2/17/2011 11:46 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi...can you give us a bit more info?

What meds have you taken exactly, how bad is your UC...has it ever been in control?

I would avoid it like the plague, but I've never gotten to the point where it's been needed, even at the 20+ bloody bms a day.

Have you been on both oral and rectal meds?

*Heather* I give suggestions, do with them what you will.
Status: ...Asacol 3 @ 2x daily; Salofalk enema @ 3rd night (nightly/ flares, tapered/maintenance)
~diagnosed January 1989 UC (proctosigmoiditis)
~Bentylol 20mg as needed; Zantac 150mg; Symbicort/Airomir (asthma);Effexor XR 37.5 (depression)
~vitamins/minerals/supplements; Probiotics....(RenewLife Ultimate Flora Critical Care+Primadophilus Reuteri capsules @ bedtime)
~Metamucil capsules 6 twice daily with meals; Vitamin D 4000 IU
~URSO for PSC (or PBC) 500mg X 2 daily (LFTs back to NORMAL!!)
My doc's logic.. "TREAT (FROM)BOTH ENDS" worth it !!!

New Member

Date Joined Sep 2009
Total Posts : 19
   Posted 2/18/2011 12:33 AM (GMT -7)   
thanks for the feedback guys. still freaked out and unsure tho.

ive been taking salofalk for the past 2 1/2 years now- and am still loosing alittle blood everyday. and ive only taken oral med. compared to others on this forum, i dont think my uc is that bad. im not sure what the prednisone is going to do for me.

Elite Member

Date Joined May 2003
Total Posts : 29840
   Posted 2/18/2011 12:56 AM (GMT -7)   
Salofalk...oral...not enough. Please ask the doc for the retention enemas to use as well as the oral pills.

You need both, and I would suggest you trying that before going on the prednisone. Has your doctor never suggested rectal meds?

*Heather* I give suggestions, do with them what you will.
Status: ...Asacol 3 @ 2x daily; Salofalk enema @ 3rd night (nightly/ flares, tapered/maintenance)
~diagnosed January 1989 UC (proctosigmoiditis)
~Bentylol 20mg as needed; Zantac 150mg; Symbicort/Airomir (asthma);Effexor XR 37.5 (depression)
~vitamins/minerals/supplements; Probiotics....(RenewLife Ultimate Flora Critical Care+Primadophilus Reuteri capsules @ bedtime)
~Metamucil capsules 6 twice daily with meals; Vitamin D 4000 IU
~URSO for PSC (or PBC) 500mg X 2 daily (LFTs back to NORMAL!!)
My doc's logic.. "TREAT (FROM)BOTH ENDS" worth it !!!

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jul 2008
Total Posts : 748
   Posted 2/18/2011 6:26 AM (GMT -7)   
I completely agree with both subdued and Q. If you don't think your UC is that bad, and other things can help get it under control, try the rectals first. I had to try a few, but they really helped me with minor flares. If oral meds are all you have done thus far, I would not move to pred before trying rectals and upping the oral meds.

As far as pred, yes, it will buy you time if that is what you need. That is why I have ended up on it-the first time I was in the hospital, they put me on it, then I started Humira. Second time I was trying to avoid the hospital so I started, but ended up there anyway, then started Remicade. But my UC is that bad, and these were not minor flares. However, I never want to go back on it again. First, it doesn't help me enough to warrant the negative effects of it. Second, the side effects for me are huge. Besides the massive weight gain, moon face, acne, greasy hair and then hair falling out during the taper (all of which stunk), it caused me major mood swings, thinning skin, facial hair growth, delusions upon taper, depression, joint problems, and yes, high blood sugar. It is awful stuff-and when you are on it for a month, you have to taper. Tapering sucks. Of course, it hits everyone differently, and some people feel great on it-but for me personally, it isn't worth it.

Good luck and feel better!
35 years old, stay at home mom of 2 girls, ages 5 and 4
Currently expecting #3! Due 8/31/2011
Diagnosed in March 2007, symptoms started Dec. 2006
Currently on:
REMICADE (started 2/26/10), otherwise taking Asacol (6/day), slow-fe iron, milk thistle, multivitamin, calcium, Ultimate Flora Critical Care, Vit. C, Vit. D3, Omega 3, PepZin, MegaZyme, Folic Acid, B6 & B12

Ugh Just Ugh
Veteran Member

Date Joined Jan 2010
Total Posts : 1004
   Posted 2/18/2011 6:07 PM (GMT -7)   
When I went on prednisone last year because I thought I was dying. It was awful and I'd only use it again if I was in really bad shape. I like the suggestions Q and Supa gave. :o)
Current Meds: Remicade (5mg/kg).
Past Meds: Canasa, Hydrocortisone Enema & Supp., Oral Mesalamines, Imuran, Oral Prednisone 2/10-9/10.
Current condition: Delicate Remission, trying to find the right combination!

Regular Member

Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 473
   Posted 2/18/2011 6:50 PM (GMT -7)   
After my few month experience on prednisone, I would avoid at all costs. Yes, it worked for me, put UC in check, but I did not like the side effects. Personally I'd look for a natural treatment if possible, lots of stuff people have found w/ success on this forum. If I was bleeding every day I'd first look at what I am eating/drinking Good luck to you, you will get better soon!
Blogging my experience With UC.

12-14-2010 - Following strict TCM diet and herbal teas. (Traditional Chinese Medicine)

2000 - Ulcerative Colitis - Proctitis
Asacol -> Colazal -> Lialda 4x/day
Daily: 500mg Vit D + 1000mg Ester C + 450mg Saw Palmetto(5x/daily)

Regular Member

Date Joined Feb 2011
Total Posts : 48
   Posted 2/18/2011 8:47 PM (GMT -7)   
Prednisone is really the only drug I have known to manage my UC... I took Lialda along with it for just a short amount of time a couple of months ago. Prednisone gives me moon face, horrible hot flashes/night sweats, mood swings, and aching joints. Also makes me eat like a cow if I'm taking more than 20mg. So it made me gain weight when I was on it the first time. It is great though as far as it getting my symptoms in check. I have a love/hate relationship with it.
Mild 'acute' UC Dec 08... Prednisone Dec 08 - Feb 09. No meds until recent diagnosis.
Diagnosed - Mild UC Dec 2010 during 33rd week of pregnancy... Lialda and Prednisone Dec 2010 - Jan 2011. Flared again during labor. Stopped taking Lialda. Currently on 10 mg Prednisone. Tapering.
Have GI appt on the 23rd. We'll see...
My husband had severe UC... Had his colon removed over ten yrs ago.

New Member

Date Joined Feb 2011
Total Posts : 14
   Posted 2/18/2011 9:06 PM (GMT -7)   
I have mixed feelings about prednisone. I was first put on it in September 2010. I finally weened off of it in December 2010 and then ended up in the hospital with a flare two weeks later. However, the reason I was put on the prednisone in the first place is because I was losing about 2 cups of blood per day and the prednisone NEVER stopped the bleeding. But it did stop me from having a flare. The side effects that I had from prednisone were:
- hot flashes
- night sweats
- moon face
- crankiness
- hunger
- insomnia
What is important to know is that everyone is different. If you take your prednisone early in the morning you can usually avoid the night sweats and insomnia fairly easily. I have very severe ulcerative colitis. If yours is not severe I would suggest asking your doctor for the Salofalk enemas (a pain in the butt, literally, but worth it).

Do you know how many mgs of prednisone your doc wants to put you on? Weening doesn't take too long. I just started on Remicade and my doctor has me going down 5 mgs every three days and I haven't had any problems. I was extremely worried about taking prednisone when I first went on it in September but I can say today I do not weigh more, I don't have more body hair, or think my quality is life is any worse than it was before. Also, prednisone only MASKS the symptoms you are having, it does not necessarily make them go away, and this is why prednisone may be a miracle for some people, but it is never a permanent solution. That is another reason why your doctor should try all avenues before resorting to prednisone. Hope this helped.
- Female, 23yo, diagnosed with UC Jan '10. Prednisone dependent since Sept '10. First Remicade treatment on Feb 4th '11.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Mar 2008
Total Posts : 678
   Posted 2/18/2011 9:35 PM (GMT -7)   
First time I took it, it worked within 24 hours. Was only on it 3 weeks. Felt a little hyped up but that was all. The 2nd time I took it, it took a toll on me mentally. I think b/c it was a perfect storm b/c I had just had a baby. I thought I was going to go out of my mind. But, it did get me out of a flare. From now on, I would only take it if I was in a really really bad flare. Good luck!
33 yr old female, mommy to 2 girls
2/08 Mild Pancolitis/ 4/10 scope showed almost normal colon!
UC since 2000/Dx'd 2008
Cannot tolerate mesalamine. Currently take probiotics, fish oil & various Standard Process supps. Cut out soda drink green tea. Applied Kinesiology & Reiki.

New Member

Date Joined Sep 2009
Total Posts : 19
   Posted 2/19/2011 1:10 AM (GMT -7)   
thanks for all the info guys :)
I think i will give it a try, otherwise ill never know - hopefully nothing scary happens :/

the doc prescribed 20mg, and no, he never mentioned rectal meds.

And thanks for the tips JKM87 & Quincy

Regular Member

Date Joined Jan 2011
Total Posts : 124
   Posted 2/19/2011 9:28 AM (GMT -7)   
If you take it properly i.e taper the steriods then it's a fine drug, the side effects aren't that bad.
22 y/o Male from Dublin, Ireland. DX in January 09, went from 13 stone to 9 and 1/2 in one month!! The days of partying and drinking till 6 in morning are behind me . . . . . . . . well, there not as frequent, LOL.

New Member

Date Joined Dec 2010
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 2/19/2011 2:06 PM (GMT -7)   
I have had a really good experience with Prednisone. Starting on 75 mg/day, tapering 5 mg every week (at the end tapering every two weeks). I had some side-effects: hunger (led to minor weight gain), sweats and restlessness but it wasn't bad at all. I like the drug a lot, as it really helped me.

I don't think you should be scared of taking it, especially not when taking the short treatment period into account.

My grandpa took it for years, and yes, then it's bad. I wouldn't be on it all the time, but for shorter periods of time it can really help you.

Everybody is different, so try it out and draw your own conclusions would be the best advice.

Veteran Member

Date Joined May 2007
Total Posts : 768
   Posted 2/19/2011 3:55 PM (GMT -7)   
Yeah, I guess with most it's a necessary evil with UC. If you have a really severe flare-up that hospitalizes you, that liquid you see above your bed on the drip, 99% of the time it's Prednisone.

Regardless of it's bad rep, as far as the medical profession is concerned, it seems to be the #1 'go-to' drug for calming the bowels down. Motwyw...

Veteran Member

Date Joined Oct 2008
Total Posts : 938
   Posted 2/19/2011 4:40 PM (GMT -7)   
I've been on and off Prednisone multiple times. For me, it's not that bad being on it. You do not have to gain weight on Prednisone. I monitor my intake (I am a Weight Watchers member) and make sure I get exercise and I actually have lost weight while on courses of Prednisone. My most noticeable side effects are the insomnia, irritability, and some anxiety. I also know what it's potentially doing in my body so that of course is a concern (bone thinning, etc.).

My main issue with Prednisone is that it seems my body may have somehow adapted to the "normal" course that my doctor gives me (starting at 40 mg then tapering). This time around it's just not working like it used to. I don't know if this is a common thing or not, but it's clear to me that steroids are no longer going to buy me time unless it's really high doses that I'm not comfortable with.

If you chose to go ahead, I would be sure and ask your doctor what the longer term plan is. If this ends your flare, great. But what is the plan if you flare again? I would make sure you know the answer to that question going in.

Good luck to you!
UC dx 2/08
Former treatment:

Asacol (2 pills 3xday)

Rowasa nightly x 6 weeks

Prednisone: 5 weeks spring 2009, 8 weeks summer 2009

Current treatment:

Lialda (4 pills 1xday)

B-12 Supplement

Unable to stay off Prednisone for more than 4-6 weeks without flare up, currently off and flaring

Cortenema at night (started 2/3/11) while waiting for labs and GI visit. Not helping much.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Aug 2008
Total Posts : 5921
   Posted 2/19/2011 6:15 PM (GMT -7)   
     Prednisone for short term isn't that bad, however, I became dependent on it after suffering with UP for twelve years.  It gave me osteoporosis, mood swings, insomnia, high blood pressure and high glucose levels.  All other meds failed and I had a total colectomy with end ileostomy on June 28th of last year.  Off prednisone since the beginning of August....while I will always have the osteoporosis, my blood glucose and blood pressure levels have returned to normal.
     If you must go on prednisone, make sure you take calcium supplements and monitor your blood pressure.  I knew my blood glucose had elevated because I started getting tingling sensations in my fingers and excessive thirst.  Both my parents were diabetics, so I knew I was in trouble.  Bought myself a monitor and sure 2 hr pp was almost 300!!!
     I feel wonderful now.  Surgery was no snap but I am sooo grateful to be off all those meds.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 3231
   Posted 2/20/2011 11:54 PM (GMT -7)   
Side effects I got from pred (I was on it for three months, highest dosage - 40 mgs, average dosage - 25 mgs)

short-term effects that gradually went away:
muscle spasms
inflamed joints
sensitive teeth
moon face
weight gain
bladder infections

long-term effects:
slight osteoarthritis in right hip joint
increase in eye pressure
very slight increase in meat on upper back, right below neck

For those who say they didn't get any bad side effects from pred: not all side effects from taking pred are visible. Pred eats the connective tissue, and much of our connective tissue runs deep in the body.
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