Corticosteroids are medications used to treat COPD, asthma, autoimmune illnesses such as lupus or rheumatoid arthritis, and to avoid organ transplant rejection. Prednisone is one of the corticosteroids, purchase and consumption of prednisone strictly require doctor prescription to attain maximum effectiveness while minimising side effects. Corticosteroids can be produced in different forms for different routes of administration, such as tablets, syrup, inhaler and vial for injection. Steroid side effects can vary depending on the pharmaceutical method, strength or dose, and length or duration of use.
Steroids used to treat chronic lung disorders are not the same as anabolic steroids used by bodybuilders,do not be stigmatized by the misused example. Oral steroids, such as prednisone, may be recommended for people with chronic lung disorders, such as COPD, during pneumonia or an exacerbation, rapid, significant worsening of respiratory symptoms that necessitates a change in treatment. Prednisone might be the life saving drug at those events, by relieving the symptoms of chest congestion.
Corticosteroids have been widely used for their anti-inflammatory and immunosuppressive properties. Inflammation is the basic body response to any noxious stimuli, with the goal of eliminating the noxious stimulus and initiating the process of tissue repair. The body inflammatory reaction involves leukocytes, chemical mediators, and vascular alterations. These inflammatory changes, and chemical mediators will eventually irritate the bronchiolar smooth muscle which mediates cough, sense of congestion as well as stimulating systemic response such as fever.
All of these chemical mediators are important in initiating an inflammatory response, and pharmaceutical inhibition of their effects can reduce the inflammatory response. Besides that, prednisone also decreases the immune systemic response to reduce symptoms such as swelling and allergic-type reactions, which have a role in causing chest congestion too. Hence, with those therapeutic actions of prednisone, the symptoms suffered by the personnel will be milder.
However, prolonged usage of corticosteroid may lead to an immunosuppressive state where signs and symptoms of certain diseases will be masked, making the diagnosis to be more challenging. The other common side effects are:
- Increase in appetite, weight gain.
- Adrenal gland suppression, increased blood sugar (diabetes), emotional changes such as moodiness, depression, euphoria and insomnia.
- Salt and water retention, loss of potassium.
- High blood pressure (hypertension).
- Increase tendency to bruise and possible thinning of the skin.
- Muscle weakness and osteoporosis, may increase the risk of fractures or vertebrae compression.
- Increased risk of glaucoma and cataracts.
Be aware that the extent of the adverse effects varies from person to person. Chronic use of prednisone may even cause Cushing-like symptoms such as fat redistribution to the face, back of the neck, and abdomen.
Corticosteroids such as prednisone are very effective medications that improve the condition of many patients, improved their quality of life. Somehow, it has a vary range and severity of side effects. A proper diet intake and some restrictions are beneficial while taking prednisone to overcome the modifiable side effects. Meanwhile, misuse of prednisone is quite dangerous and it is necessary to follow the doctor’s instructions and follow-up as per require.
Other measures that can be done by consumers are daily exercise regimen, such as walking, working out at a gym or at home, practicing tai chi and others. This will aid in burning excess calories, strengthen muscles and bones, and increase your sense of well-being. Aerobic exercises, which burn calories and enhance cardiovascular fitness, and moderate weight training, which develops muscles and decreases bone loss, should be included in an exercise regimen. Begin with a simple walking regimen. If you’re ever too tired to exercise, try again the next day. The goal is to have a consistent exercise regimen that functions similarly to pulmonary rehabilitation.