Prednisolone is arguably the safest and most efficient drug of its kind on the planet. The WHO considers this drug to be an essential part of any medical system. Prednisolone acetate and some other forms of prednisolone can be found in many first aid kits. Useful for short term reactionary treatment of a variety of health conditions, this drug is definitely amongst the most important medications to have at your disposal at all times.
Prednisolone for kids, adults, and even animals is essentially the same drug that has lots of possible applications including both reactionary immediate answers to a variety of allergies and recreational treatment of a several life-threatening diseases. Important for all categories of patients, prednisolone is available as a generic in the vast majority of countries making it an accessible medication.
Prednisolone is a one of the first discovered and synthesized corticosteroids which is still the most perfect answer to a wide range of possible medical conditions that may threaten one’s health. Corticosteroids are important participants of multiple critically important physiologic processes in the body taking part in immune and stress response effectively determining how well our organism is able to fend off infections, bacterial invasions, and even some psychological problems.
Approved in 1955, prednisolone has been reevaluated multiple times nearly once in 2-3 years. Each new iteration of the drug has been carefully examined by specialists and experts before its re-release in the market. The same goes for multiple generic versions of the drug manufactured outside of Western Europe and America. Prednisolone is very cheap in many developing countries with the price per day being as low as 1 cent.
Today, prednisolone is a widely acknowledged medication with an incredible versatility and amazingly wide range of applications. Manufactured in multiple form factors and distributed all over the world, this is truly a must-have drug for any household.
Medical Applications of Prednisolone
The range of medical applications for prednisolone including a rich selection of autoimmune conditions and inflammations.
Amongst most common applications:
- Prednisolone used in various forms including prednisolone sod to treat both symptoms of asthma and as a recreational medication.
- Pericarditis and other similar inflammations (sarcoidosis, dermatomyotositis, etc.). As a great anti-inflammatory drug, prednisolone is applied both reactively and proactively.
- Various autoimmune conditions like systemic lupus, Kawasaki disease, and other similar diseases with inflammation of an unknown etiology.
Nearly all inflammatory and autoimmune conditions can be treated effectively with prednisolone. There are other corticosteroids that can be used in certain scenarios, but the go-to medication that can be used safely and in an overwhelming majority of emergency situations. The latter is more than important in a world where over 60% of population have at least some kind of allergy. At the same time, prednisolone is a great drug to have at your disposal to counteract allergic reactions to other drugs and foods.
Prednisolone sodium phosphate oral solutions and similar generics can be stored for years and used when needed. Due to this fact, having prednisolone is incredibly important for all people with allergies and those who use prescribed drugs that may cause allergy.
Another important application of prednisolone and other corticosteroids is suppressing the immune system so that transplanted organs are not rejected by the organism. This is an extremely important part of rehabilitation treatment after any transplantation operation where the patient may react negatively to a newly transplanted organ.
A widely used form factor is prednisolone acetate suspension that can be used to reduce swelling, itching, and other allergic reactions that occur in one’s eyes. The suspension is available in generic forms and produced widely all over the world. There are off-brand solutions from India, Turkey, and Eastern Europe.
Various Negative Side Effects
Despite being one of the safest drugs ever developed, prednisolone has a vast range of side effects with the majority of them occurring seldom. Some adverse effects may very well threaten your life or cause considerable psychological changes including some behavioral changes and even changes in cognitive activities.
Some side effects:
- Vulnerability to infections;
- Constant hunger, possible weight gain, regular nausea, and even malaise;
- Cardiovascular complications that mostly occur in children;
- Various dermatological effects namely reddening of skin, changes of epithelium color, slow healing of bruises and scratches, rash, changes in the rate of hair growth, and thinning skin;
- Various hormonal changes including menstrual abnormalities, weaker response to hormonal treatment;
- High blood pressure due to changes in electrolyte balance;
- Minor convulsions, systematic headaches, and vertigo.
These are side effects that often occur in patients especially during recreational long-term treatment. Amongst other important long-term side effects we must highlight possible changes in important body tissues including bones, muscles, and skin. Bones notably weaken during long term usage of prednisolone which may lead to fractures. This is also the reason why you should avoid using prednisolone during pregnancies.
Regular usage of prednisolone sod may lead to complications with the digestive system namely higher probability of getting stomach ulcer. Prednisolone for kids should be used carefully due to possible complications with liver and kidney.
In short term, changes in behavior and other psychological issues including stress and depression may be observed in patients. However, these adverse effects usually go away within several days after you stop using prednisolone.
Possible Form Factors of Prednisolone
As one of the most frequently used drugs in the world, prednisolone for various applications is manufactured in many forms.
Depending on the desired way of administration and future applications, you may choose various types of dosage forms.
- Prednisolone sod (sodium phosphate oral solution) was initially introduced to the market by Pediapred several decades ago. This is one of the most often used orally administrated forms of prednisolone.
- Prednisolone acetate oral suspension. A quickly adsorbed version of the medication is often used for immediate treatment of various types of allergies. Note that oral solutions are not suitable for ophthalmological usage. For the latter sterile prednisolone acetate suspension in form of eye-drop is used.
- Prednisolone oral tablets is a slower version of the drug for oral administration. Used mostly for recreational treatment and for immune system suppression in the long run.
- Prednisolone sod in form of dissolvable tablets.
Dosing is individual for each person and depends on the brand of the drug. The medication always comes with an instruction and you should follow its recommendations as closely as possible. Due to a rich variety of pharmaceutical companies that produce prednisolone in multiple forms, finding the most optimal dosage is often difficult without multiple tries and mistakes. Do not worry, in the vast majority of cases prednisolone does not cause severe side effects. Be careful and read instructions attentively before using the drug.
Possible Conflicts with Other Drugs
Prednisolone may interact negatively with some medications. We highly recommend you to speak to your doctor before combining prednisolone with other medications even in the short term. Try avoiding mixing prednisolone together with prescribed drugs.
Amongst conflicting drugs:
- Specific antibiotics like Clarithromycin, Rifampin, Ciprofloxacin or Erythromycin;
- Other immunosuppressant-like drugs including cyclosporine;
- Anitfungal drugs like ketoconazole;
- Specific contraceptives administrated orally;
- Barbiturates like phenobarbital and neurological drugs like carbamazepine and/or hydantoins like phenytoin;
- Aspirin, ritodrine, methotrexate;
- Diuretics like furosemide, hydrochlorothiazide, and others;
- Anticoagulants including Heparin, Xa Inhibitors, Warfarin.
Note that it is not recommended to use prednisolone after being vaccinated. The vast majority of conflicts is based on possible interactions between drugs. Prednisolone may increase the probability of occurrence of side effects caused both by itself and conflicting drugs. Some medications work less effectively in presence of prednisolone regardless of its administration method. Exclusion is prednisolone acetate in form of eye-drops.
The list of prescribed and highly specific drugs that may interact with prednisolone is actually much wider. We strongly suggest you to consult with your doctor before combining any of them with prednisolone.
How to Use and What to Avoid
Due to its versatility and a wide range of possible applications, all people should be aware of basic rules of Prednisolone usage. We will cover only fundamental basics of using orally administrated prednisolone sod.
There are specific rules that you need to follow in order to maximize the effect of the medication while reducing the change of getting adverse effects.
- Follow your routine. Your treatment plan is usually calculated strictly and it is not recommended to skip dosages as well as overdosing if your skipped one dose. Never take double dose of the medication at once.
- Administrate the drug only orally. Do not use injections.
- Carefully read and follow all recommendations given to you by the manufacturer of the drug in the instruction.
- Never use prednisolone together with alcohol.
- Prednisolone for kids should always be used with caution. Note that children are more likely to react negatively to the drug. Additionally, the rate of growth in children taking prednisolone may increase dramatically.
- Prednisolone is capable of triggering hyperglycemia increasing your blood sugar level. Additional intakes of insulin may be required.
It’s important to note that this article is presented for educational purposes exclusively. We are not responsible for the accuracy or relevance of the information regarding Prednisolone and its consumption. The article shouldn’t be viewed or used as a substitute for professional medical advice, as it is up to your doctor to decide whether the medication is right for you. We encourage you to always consult a professional before taking any medication, including Prednisolone. The information in this article is generalized, so it won’t apply to every patient. You should keep in mind that self-treatment can be dangerous for your health, as you may not be aware of all the necessary precautions.