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Permanent Side Effects of Prednisolone

5/8/2020

Adrenal Gland

The next side effect is connected with your adrenal gland. It's on the top of your kidneys. Your renal organ and the adrenal gland stops doing its job, while you are on Prednisolone. Prednisolone is mimicking the adrenal hormone called cortisol and is, basically, completely replacing it. And for some people their adrenal gland never catches up and remembers to kick back into gear once you go down one dose with Prednisolone. For those people it's a very small percentage, but they can have permanent damage to their adrenal gland. Now it's called adrenal insufficiency. Most people don't get that. So, it's not likely, but it is possible.

Permanent Side Effects of Prednisolone

Bone Pain

Let’s move down to your hips and other bones, your back and all of those things, which have bones in them. Prednisolone bone loss is permanent. It doesn't go away once you stop taking Prednisolone.

Osteonecrosis and Osteoporosis

The worst possible side effect that I know of is osteonecrosis or avascular necrosis of the hip joint, where it basically kills the bone on the little ball that goes in the socket of your hip. And you need something like a hip replacement, when you're in your 30-s. So, that is by far the worst side effect of Prednisolone. It doesn't go away, just because you stopped taking it.

The osteoporosis is also permanent. There are things you can do, not only while you're taking Prednisolone, but also when you stop taking it, to try to build it back up. But just stopping Prednisolone will not cure it. There is a permanent withdrawal of calcium from your bones that doesn't just come back, when you stop taking Prednisolone. So, while you're on Prednisolone, the American College of Rheumatology recommends that you should take calcium and vitamin D to boost the strength of your bones. Then you don't have fractures like compression fractures in your spine or break your hip, or other terrible consequences of osteoporosis.

Those are the most permanent consequences, the irreversible long lasting side effects of Prednisolone.  That means that the hundred and forty other side effects that you can experience, while on Prednisolone, like night sweats or insomnia, or weird things with your teeth, your skin and hair loss. My hair came back. That is reversible. It goes away. Your body might take a while. The recovery process is extensive. But it does come back. It does go back to way it was before Prednisolone. And that means the weight gain is not like having a baby. And suddenly the weight just falls off. It is weight and you need to lose that weight, when you stop taking Prednisolone, but it's not permanent. It's not a lifetime sentence that you can never lose that weight like it is with your bones and like having osteonecrosis. There's no reversing that having adrenal insufficiency. There's no reversing that you can lose the weight.

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