What is methylPREDNISolone?

Methylprednisolone is in a class of drugs called steroids. Methylprednisolone prevents the release of substances in the body that cause inflammation.

Methylprednisolone is used to treat many different conditions such as allergic disorders, skin conditions, ulcerative colitis, arthritis, lupus, psoriasis, or breathing disorders.

Methylprednisolone may also be used for other purposes not listed in this medication guide.

Precautions

You should not use this medication if you are allergic to methylprednisolone, or if you have a fungal infection anywhere in your body.

Steroid medication can weaken your immune system, making it easier for you to get an infection. Steroids can also worsen an infection you already have, or reactivate an infection you recently had. Before taking this medication, tell your doctor about any illness or infection you have had within the past several weeks.

Other medical conditions you should tell your doctor about before taking methylprednisolone include:

  • liver disease (such as cirrhosis);
  • kidney disease;
  • a thyroid disorder;
  • diabetes;
  • a history of malaria;
  • tuberculosis;
  • osteoporosis;
  • a muscle disorder such as myasthenia gravis;
  • glaucoma or cataracts;
  • herpes infection of the eyes;
  • stomach ulcers, ulcerative colitis, or diverticulitis;
  • depression or mental illness;
  • congestive heart failure; or
  • high blood pressure

If you have any of these conditions, you may need a dose adjustment or special tests to safely take methylprednisolone.

FDA pregnancy category C. This medication may be harmful to an unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant during treatment.

Methylprednisolone can pass into breast milk and may harm a nursing baby. Do not use this medication without telling your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.

Steroids can affect growth in children. Talk with your doctor if you think your child is not growing at a normal rate while using this medication.

Avoid being near people who are sick or have infections. Call your doctor for preventive treatment if you are exposed to chicken pox or measles. These conditions can be serious or even fatal in people who are using steroid medication.

Do not receive a "live” vaccine while you are being treated with methylprednisolone. Vaccines may not work as well while you are taking a steroid.

Avoid drinking alcohol while you are taking methylprednisolone.

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Instructions

Seek emergency medical attention if you think you have received too much of this medicine.

An overdose of methylprednisolone is not expected to produce life-threatening symptoms. However, long-term use of high steroid doses can lead to symptoms such as thinning skin, easy bruising, changes in the shape or location of body fat (especially in your face, neck, back, and waist), increased acne or facial hair, menstrual problems, impotence, or loss of interest in sex.

If you miss a dose or forget to take your medicine, contact your doctor or pharmacist for instructions.

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Side Effects

Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Call your doctor at once if you have any of these serious side effects:

  • problems with your vision;
  • swelling, rapid weight gain, feeling short of breath;
  • severe depression, unusual thoughts or behavior, seizure (convulsions);
  • bloody or tarry stools, coughing up blood;
  • pancreatitis (severe pain in your upper stomach spreading to your back, nausea and vomiting, fast heart rate);
  • low potassium (confusion, uneven heart rate, extreme thirst, increased urination, leg discomfort, muscle weakness or limp feeling); or
  • dangerously high blood pressure (severe headache, blurred vision, buzzing in your ears, anxiety, confusion, chest pain, shortness of breath, uneven heartbeats, seizure).

Less serious side effects may include:

  • sleep problems (insomnia), mood changes;
  • acne, dry skin, thinning skin, bruising or discoloration;
  • slow wound healing;
  • increased sweating;
  • headache, dizziness, spinning sensation;
  • nausea, stomach pain, bloating; or
  • changes in the shape or location of body fat (especially in your arms, legs, face, neck, breasts, and waist).

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Tell your doctor about any unusual or bothersome side effect. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

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Interactions

There are many other medicines that can interact with steroids. Below is only a partial list of these medicines:

  • aspirin (taken on a daily basis or at high doses);
  • a diuretic (water pill);
  • a blood thinner such as warfarin (Coumadin);
  • cyclosporine (Gengraf, Neoral, Sandimmune);
  • insulin or diabetes medications you take by mouth;
  • antibiotics such as ketoconazole (Nizoral), rifampin (Rifadin, Rifater, Rifamate, Rimactane), or troleandomycin (Tao); or
  • seizure medications such as phenytoin (Dilantin) or phenobarbital (Luminal, Solfoton).

This list is not complete and there may be other drugs that can interact with methylprednisolone. Tell your doctor about all the prescription and over-the-counter medications you use. This includes vitamins, minerals, herbal products, and drugs prescribed by other doctors. Do not start using a new medication without telling your doctor.

Other Names

A-Methapred, Adlone-40, Adlone-80, Dep Medalone 80, Depmedalone, Depo-Medrol, Depoject-80, Depopred, Duralone, M-Prednisolone, Med-Jec-40, Medipred, Medralone, Medralone 40, Medralone 80, Medrol, Medrol Dosepak, Methacort 40, Methacort 80, MethylPREDNISolone Dose Pack, Methylpred DP, Predacorten, Solu-Medrol, methylPREDNISolone, Methylcotol, Methylcotolone, and M-PREDNISolone

Available Strengths & Dosages


Route Form Strength
oral tablet 4 mg

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Disclaimer

Every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided by Cerner Multum, Inc. ('Multum') is accurate, up-to-date, and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. Drug information contained herein may be time sensitive. Multum information has been compiled for use by healthcare practitioners and consumers in the United States and therefore Multum does not warrant that uses outside of the United States are appropriate, unless specifically indicated otherwise. Multum's drug information does not endorse drugs, diagnose patients or recommend therapy. Multum's drug information is an informational resource designed to assist licensed healthcare practitioners in caring for their patients and/or to serve consumers viewing this service as a supplement to, and not a substitute for, the expertise, skill, knowledge and judgment of healthcare practitioners. The absence of a warning for a given drug or drug combination in no way should be construed to indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective or appropriate for any given patient. Multum does not assume any responsibility for any aspect of healthcare administered with the aid of information Multum provides. The information contained herein is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. If you have questions about the drugs you are taking, check with your doctor, nurse or pharmacist.

Copyright 1996-2004 Cerner Multum, Inc. Version 2.05. Revision date 8/23/04

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