Prednisone - oral


Patient Medicine Information
Why do I need this medicine?
Prednisone is used to relieve inflammation and treat a wide variety of diseases such as certain allergic reactions, asthma, rheumatoid arthritis (inflammation in joints of fingers, wrist, feet, ankles), lupus (autoimmune disease that causes inflammation), inflammatory bowel diseases (e.g. ulcerative colitis, Crohn’s disease), and sudden flares of multiple sclerosis (disease affecting the brain and/or spinal cord).

This medicine may be used to treat other conditions as decided by your doctor.
How do I take this medicine?
Take Prednisone exactly as directed by your doctor or according to the instructions on the label. Do not take more or less than instructed by your doctor.

Take it together with food or immediately after a meal. Try to take it at the same time each day.

This medicine is available as a conventional tablet, modified-release tablet, or as an oral solution.

If you are taking an oral solution, use the calibrated dropper supplied with each bottle to measure out your dose.

If you are taking the modified-release type of tablet (usually labeled as "MR"), swallow it whole. Do not divide, chew, or crush the tablet.

The dose of this medicine will be decided by your doctor. Your doctor will advise you on the treatment timeframe depending on your condition and response to the medication.

Prednisone must be taken regularly for it to be effective. Continue taking this medicine even when you feel better. Do not stop taking it suddenly as this may worsen your condition.
What should I do if I have forgotten to take this medicine?
Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and return to your normal dosing schedule.

DO NOT double a dose under any circumstances.

If you often forget to take your medicine, let your doctor and pharmacist know.
When should I not use this medicine?
Alert your doctor if you have the following conditions:
  • active infection affecting the entire body e.g. fungal infection
  • cerebral malaria (a complication of malaria characterised by swelling of the brain or brain damage)
as Prednisone may not be suitable for you.

Alert your doctor if you have been recently vaccinated. You must avoid any vaccination with live vaccines without consulting with your doctor.
What should I take note of while taking this medicine?
Inform your doctor if you have the following conditions:
  • diabetes
  • eye problems e.g. eye infection, injury of the cornea, glaucoma (increased pressure in the eye)
  • heart disease e.g. heart failure, recent heart attack
  • high blood pressure
  • bowel problems e.g. stomach ulcer, inflammation of the large intestines
  • epilepsy (fits or seizures)
  • mood disorder or mental health problems
  • osteoporosis (thinning and weakening of bones)
  • myasthenia gravis (muscle weakness disorder)
  • systemic sclerosis (an autoimmune disorder characterised by thickening of the skin)
  • steroid myopathy (muscle weakness of the upper and lower limbs)
  • active or history of TB (infection known as tuberculosis)
  • polio (infectious viral disease characterised by muscle paralysis)
  • other infections caused by bacteria, viruses, parasites or fungi
  • thyroid disease
  • kidney disease
  • liver disease
Let your doctor know if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.

Be sure to check with your doctor or pharmacist before giving Prednisone to a child or the elderly. Children and elderly people may be more sensitive to the side effects.

Avoid exposure to anyone who is infected with chickenpox, shingles, or measles. If you are exposed to these infections, contact your doctor immediately.

If you are going to undergo a laboratory test (e.g. nitroblue tetrazolinium tests, skin tests), or an operation, including minor surgery or dental work, inform your doctor or dentist that you are taking this medicine.

Why is it important to keep my appointments with the doctor?

Keep your appointments with your doctor. Your doctor needs to monitor your condition and check your response to the medication regularly.
  • Routine tests (e.g. blood sugar and electrolyte levels, kidney function, bone density, eye examination, chest x-ray) may be done while you are being treated with Prednisone. Your doctor will advise you about how often you will need to have these tests.
  • Your blood pressure may rise to unsafe levels without you noticing it. Monitor your blood pressure regularly.
  • Monitoring of the growth (e.g. height) and development of children taking this medicine may also be needed.
What side effects could I experience?
Prednisone may cause any of the following side effects: headache, dizziness with spinning sensation, nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea, constipation, stomach discomfort or pain, weight gain, loss of appetite, restlessness, difficulty sleeping, impaired wound healing, acne or pimple breakout, stretch marks, red marks on the skin, and excessive hair growth.

Some side effects may need immediate medical help. Alert your doctor quickly if you experience any of the following:
  • signs of Cushing’s syndrome e.g. swollen, round face, purple stretch marks, buffalo hump-shaped upper back, thinning of skin
  • fast or irregular heartbeat, shortness of breath, chest pain, confusion
  • withdrawal symptoms e.g. muscle weakness, dizziness, muscle and joint pain
  • fits or seizure
  • blurring of vision or other visual disturbances
  • light-headedness, decreased urine output
  • signs of infection e.g. persistent fever, chills, colds or cough
  • unusual changes in mood or behaviour (being too depressed, agitated, or having compulsive and impulsive behaviour)
  • rashes, breathlessness, swelling of the face, eyes or mouth
Inform your doctor if any of these side effects do not go away or are severe, or if you experience other side effects.
Can I take this with other medicines?
Alert your doctor if you have been recently vaccinated. You must avoid any vaccination with live vaccines without consulting with your doctor.

Inform your doctor and pharmacist if you are taking or using any of these medicines:
  • medicines for diabetes e.g. insulin
  • certain antibiotics e.g. ciprofloxacin, levofloxacin, erythromycin
  • medicines to treat fungal infections e.g. ketoconazole, itraconazole, amphotericin B
  • water pills or medicines for water retention e.g. hydrochlorothiazide, furosemide, acetazolamide
  • medicines to treat TB (infection known as tuberculosis) e.g. rifampicin, isoniazid
  • medicines for HIV infection e.g. ritonavir, cobicistat
  • medicines for epilepsy (fits or seizures) e.g. phenobarbital, carbamazepine
  • NSAIDs (medicines for pain and inflammation) e.g. ibuprofen, aspirin
  • blood-thinning medicines e.g. warfarin
  • medicines for malaria e.g. chloroquine, hydroxychloroquine, mefloquine
  • medicines containing oestrogens e.g. birth control pills
  • ciclosporin (medicine used in organ transplant or certain immune disorders)
This list does not include all medicines that may interact with Prednisone.

Always notify your doctor and pharmacist if you are taking any other medicines, including herbal tonics such as traditional Chinese medicines, supplements and medicines that you buy without a prescription.
What special dietary instructions should I follow?
Avoid alcohol and liquorice.
How should I store this medicine?
Store in a cool, dry place away from the reach of children. Protect from light and moisture.

Discard the opened bottle of oral solution after 90 days.

Medicines must not be used past the expiry date.
This information is independently developed by MIMS based on prednisone - oral and is provided for your reference only. It is not a replacement for and should only be used in conjunction with full consultation with a licensed healthcare professional, the information provided by your pharmacist and/or the manufacturer of the medication. It may not contain all the available information you require and cannot substitute professional medical care, nor does it take into account all individual circumstances. Although great effort has been made to ensure content accuracy, we shall not be held responsible or liable for any claims or damages arising from the use or misuse of the information contained herein, its contents or omissions, or otherwise. Copyright © 2020 MIMS. All rights reserved. Powered by MIMS.com
Exclusive offer for doctors
Register for a MIMS account and receive free medical publications worth $139 a year.
Sign up for free
Already a member? Sign in