1.      Action


A.      It may be used to decrease inflammation.

B.      It may be used in replacement therapy in adrenalcortical deficiency.


2.      Potential Adverse Reactions


A.      Moon face.

B.      Weight gain.

C.      Edema.

D.      Potassium loss.

E.      Delayed wound healing.

F.       Increased frequency of urination.

G.      Urination at night time.

H.      Insomnia.

I.         Headache.

J.       Muscle weakness.

K.       Allergic reaction.

L.       Cardiovascular effects (hypertension, thromboembolism, arteritis, congestive heart failure).

M.     Infection.

N.      Eye complications.

O.      Peptic ulcer.

P.      Adrenal insufficiency.


3.      General Education


A.      Side effects are more likely if take for more than two weeks.

B.      Avoid crowds or contact with people with infections because of increased susceptibility to infections.

C.      Take prednisone with food or milk to reduce possible gastrointestinal side effects.

D.      Report any signs of slow healing. (Prednisone may mask or exacerbate infections.)

E.      Watch for signs of hyperglycemia (sweating, shakiness, fruity odor of breath, etc.).

F.       Report any early signs of adrenal insufficiency (fatigue, muscular weakness, join pain, fever, anorexia, nausea, dyspnea, dizziness, fainting).

G.      Assess for cushingoid symptoms if on long-term dosage (facial puffiness, hirsutism, thinning of extremities with abdominal obesity, amenorrhea, edema).

H.      Assess for signs of depression or psychotic episodes while taking high-dose therapy.

I.         Follow a salt-restricted diet, rich in potassium and protein as ordered.

J.       Weigh daily, and report any sudden weight increase to physician.

K.       If taking steroids, discontinue; decrease dose gradually, never abruptly.

L.       Watch for withdrawal symptoms, which include rebound inflammation, fatigue, weakness, arthralgia fever, dizziness, lethargy, depression, fainting, orthostatic hypotension, dyspnea, and anorexia.

M.     Give once-daily doses in the morning for less toxicity.

N.      Dosage may need to be increased in periods of stress, but only with physician's orders.