It is never a bad idea to get a second opinion. However, Prednisone IS a standard treatement for Lupus. If you see another doctor who also feels that you have Lupus, he will more than likely prescribe Prednisone or some other type of corticosteroid (cortisone).
Lupus is a disease in which the immune system has gone a bit haywire, attacking the body's tissues and organs. Prednisone acts as an immunosuppressant. The immune system protects against foreign bacteria and viruses. In Lupus, the immune system produces antibodies, which become overactive and cause undesirable effects, as mentioned above. Prednisone suppresses the production of these antibodies.
Prednisone is a corticosteroid. These are a class of medications that are related to cortisone. They are used to reduce inflammation caused by a variety of diseases which includes Lupus. Cortisone is one type of corticosteroid. Examples of corticosteroids include prednisone and prednisolone (given by mouth), solumedrol (given intravenously), as well as triamcinolone, kenalog, celestone, depomedrol and others (given by injection into body tissues).
The common side effects of prednisone are: increased appetite, indigestion, nervousness or restlessness. The less frequent side effects are: darkening or lightening of skin color, dizziness or lightheadedness,
flushing of face or cheeks, hiccups, increased sweating, a sensation of spinning.
The serious side effects (you must call a doctor if these occur) are: Decreased or blurred vision, frequent urination, increased thirst, confusion, excitement, false sense of well-being, hallucinations (seeing, hearing, or feeling things that are not there), mental depression, mistaken feelings of self-importance or being mistreated, mood swings (sudden and wide), restlessness, skin rash or hives.
The following side effects occur when you are on a long-term dose of steroids: abdominal or stomach pain or burning (continuing)
acne, bloody or black, tarry stools, changes in vision eye pain, filling or rounding out of the face, headache, irregular heartbeat, menstrual problems, muscle cramps or pain, muscle weakness, nausea, pain in arms, back, hips, legs, ribs, or shoulders; reddish purple lines on arms, face, groin, legs, or trunk, redness of eyes, sensitivity of eyes to light
stunting of growth (in children), swelling of feet or lower legs, tearing of eyes, thin, shiny skin, trouble in sleeping, unusual bruising, unusual increase in hair growth, unusual tiredness or weakness, vomiting
weight gain (rapid), wounds that will not heal.
Bear in mind that not everyone gets these side effects! My best friend who has dermatomyositis has been on Prednisone for almost 15 years. She was a plump, round, little thing. Prednisone did just the opposite for her. Her face THINNED out, she lost weight and is now a tiny, little petite thing :? I am not saying that this will be your side-effect, I just wanted you to know that the drug does not affect everyone the same way, nor does everyone get the same side effects!
I wish you the very best. Come to us at any time when you have questions or concerns, we are here to help you in any way that we can!
Peace and Blessings
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