What side effects does cortisone have?

What side effects do cortisone tablets have?Cortisone tablets can often very effectively relieve the symptoms, especially in the acute stage of a rheumatic disease. This is related to the strong anti-inflammatory effect of cortisone. Because what causes the pain and discomfort in rheumatism, is ultimately nothing more than an overreaching inflammatory response of the body (usually in the joints). However, this powerful effect of cortisone is also associated with a whole range of possible side effects.

Whether it comes to side effects when taking cortisone preparations depends not only on individual factors (some have more to suffer from, some less and some not at all) especially on the dose and duration of ingestion. Side effects are the exception rather than short-term use. The most likely to happen then:

  • Scratched, nervous
  • a headache
  • dizziness

Read also:
How harmful are cortisone ointments for the skin?
What side effects can a cortisone spray have?

For prolonged use of cortisone tablets, the following side effects are relatively common:

  • Susceptibility to infection (body's defense cells are slowed down by cortisone)
  • decreased muscle strength, faster fatigue during physical exertion
  • brittle, cracked, thin skin
  • high blood sugar levels (can lead to a so-called cortisone diabetes)
  • Increase in blood pressure
  • Water retention in the legs (cortisone keeps water and salt in the kidneys)
  • Bone density decreases (osteoporosis risk)
  • increased intraocular pressure (glaucoma, glaucoma)
  • Lens clouding in the eye (cataract, cataract)

Read also:
Why should painkillers such as ASA, ibuprofen or diclofenac not be taken with cortisone?

Possible external changes under long-term cortisone therapy:

  • round face (fat and water retention in the cheeks, the so-called full moon face)
  • Fat and water retention in the neck area (the so-called bull neck)
  • Weight gain, especially on the upper body

It does not have to come to all that, but it can. Therefore, it is important to know about it, if necessary to react in good time and to talk to the doctor. Many of the side effects can then be alleviated by a dose reduction or even a complete change of therapy. However, you should not quit too fast, because the anti-inflammatory effect on the rheumatic area has its meaning.

Read also:
How is a full moon face created?

Author: Dr. med. Jörg Zorn

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Comments (1)
Cortisone spraying and medication
1 Friday, 06 March 2015 at 22:41
Barth, Ruth
Naproxen long-term ingestion, bull's neck suddenly visible, 4 cortisone spraying (lumbar spine), heavy water retention in upper abdomen, legs and face. What can I do against it?