6 Wacky Side Effects of Prednisone They Don't Tell You About


It’s that time of year again when summer is here and everything is in full bloom. Flowers and pollen showers. 

For some people the change of season can cause rheumatoid arthritis (RA) symptoms to flare. In my case, the summer pollen showers not only cause everything to flare but my lungs as well and my asthma returned after 13 years. Suddenly my lungs just closed and I couldn’t breathe, so off to the emergency room I went to get a breathing treatment. Then the ER doctor asks if I have ever been on prednisoneMy first thought was oh no! I have been off prednisone for over five years and finally lost the weight I gained while I was on it for three years. It’s so hard to lose that weight! I explained this to the doctor and told him I can’t go there again. He said not to worry, it’s just a taper until everything calms down. I can’t believe I forgot what it was like to be on it again. The first two days I cleaned everything in my house and rearranged my furniture! I know when I get off I will pay for this, but in the meantime I am Superwoman! Here are some other wacky side effects I forgot about.

1. You can get super hungry! As if you don’t eat something or anything soon you will lose it! It hit me all of a sudden right around 4 a.m. when I should have been sleeping!

2. It can leave a bad taste in your mouth. I don’t know if this has ever happened to anyone else but I either taste prednisone, or it tastes like I have just eaten a bowl of sugar by itself. I know it raises your blood sugar levels but I don’t want to taste that.

3. Forget about sleeping, ever! I think in the last three days I have had about two naps and one full night’s sleep — after wearing myself out cleaning, my body had no choice but to rest! Welcome to insomnia.

4. You may feel like your skin is crawling. I keep checking to see if something is crawling on me but nothing is there. Thank you prednisone for that creepy feeling!

5. You may feel like you are dirty. I don’t know if it’s just me, but I feel dirty inside and out with these drugs. I am on several prescriptions and I wonder if it’s the combination of drugs that I’m on with the steroids added that may cause this. Basically I just want to shower all the time! 

6. How fast you gain weight! It’s amazing to me how fast you can gain weight while on steroids, like literally overnight! On day two, I already noticed puffier cheeks. I believe it’s called moon face. Probably because while you are on prednisone, you will have the ability to eat the entire refrigerator at 4 a.m!

So that’s my RA perspective on life while on temporary steroids. Please excuse my sarcasm but right now I am heavily medicated and out of control! I hope you found some humor in this article, and if you are on prednisone right now, I’m so sorry!

This blog was originally published on My RA Perspective.

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