A prednisone tapering schedule can be employed by taking a smaller dose of prednisone over a period of time until you finish the medication. It is important to talk to your medical provider before employing the tapering method. I was diagnosed with GCA and PMR, put on 80 mg/day of Prednisone and discharged to the care of a Rheumatologist. In late June I spent a week in the hospital with fatigue, muscle ache and night sweats. The autoimmune symptoms subsided quickly, and my blood tests have returned to normal. I have been tapering the prednisone, and I'm now down to 8mg/day. I also receive monthly infusions of Actemra which is supposed to reduce the need for prednisone. Each time I reduce the prednisone dose, I experience mild headaches, and minor fatigue which subside late in the 4-6 week taper period. I also experience some muscle aches which can be attributed to my exercise program.
Prednisone tapering is a gradual reduction in the dose of this steroid medication to reduce or avoid symptoms of withdrawal. Many physicians, as a rule, taper the drug even if patients will only take it for a few days. This means doses start higher and drop over several days or weeks so the body can adjust to the reduction. Generally, lessening amounts may not be vital for a very short course of this steroid, but this practice is considered a necessary part of therapy if patients have taken prednisone for more than two weeks. One of the biggest concerns in using prednisone is that the body responds in ways that foster dependency on it. This occurs because of a chemical similarity between the manufactured hormone and cortisol, which humans naturally produce. The presence of prednisone sends a signal to the adrenal system to stop making cortisol. Carter Thorne (Newmarket, Ontario, Canada) has shared his great prednisone tapering calendar with us to post on Rheum Info! Simply put the date into the first Monday, print it off and give it to your patient. For those who still like to use a “pen and paper”, you can download one our prednisone tapering calendars in PDF format.
Int J Clin Pharmacol Ther. 2002 Jun;406256-62. A comparison of non-tapering vs. tapering prednisolone in acute exacerbation of asthma involving use of the. Prednisone Tapering - Patient Instructions. View File; Version Dec 2016. Category Inflammatory Bowel Disease IBD Crohn's Disease Drugs; Inflammatory.