Methylprednisolone (By mouth)

Introduction

Methylprednisolone (meth-il-pred-NIS-oh-lone)

Treats asthma, allergic reactions, inflammation, flare-ups of ongoing illnesses, and many other medical problems. May also be used to lessen some symptoms of cancer. This medicine is a steroid.

Brand Name(s)

Medrol

There may be other brand names for this medicine.

When This Medicine Should Not Be Used

You should not use this medicine if you have had an allergic reaction to methylprednisolone or if you have a fungus infection.

How to Use This Medicine

Tablet

  • Your doctor will tell you how much of this medicine to use and how often. Do not use more medicine or use it more often than your doctor tells you to.
  • If you are using this medicine for an ongoing illness, your dose may need to be changed occasionally. Some people take this medicine only every other day, which helps to decrease side effects.
  • Take your medicine in the morning, unless your doctor tells you otherwise.
  • It is best to take this medicine with food or milk.

If a dose is missed:

  • If you miss a dose or forget to use your medicine, use it as soon as you can. If it is almost time for your next dose, wait until then to use the medicine and skip the missed dose. Do not use extra medicine to make up for a missed dose.

How to Store and Dispose of This Medicine

  • Store the medicine in a closed container at room temperature, away from heat, moisture, and direct light.
  • Ask your pharmacist, doctor, or health caregiver about the best way to dispose of any outdated medicine or medicine no longer needed.
  • Keep all medicine away from children and never share your medicine with anyone.

Drugs and Foods to Avoid

Ask your doctor or pharmacist before using any other medicine, including over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products.

  • Make sure your doctor knows if you are also using aspirin, cyclosporine (Sandimmune®, Neoral®), phenobarbital (Luminol®), phenytoin (Dilantin®), rifampin (Rifadin®), ketoconazole (Nizoral®), troleandomycin (TAO®), high-dose aspirin, a blood thinner such as warfarin (Coumadin®), or diabetes medicine (insulin or oral medicine such as Avandia®, Glucophage®).
  • Talk to your doctor before getting flu shots or other vaccines while you are receiving this medicine. Vaccines may not work as well, or they could make you ill while you are using this medicine.

Warnings While Using This Medicine

  • Make sure your doctor knows if you are pregnant or breastfeeding, or if you have high blood pressure, blood clotting problems, tuberculosis, Strongyloides (threadworm) infection, thyroid problems, liver disease, mental or emotional problems, eye disease (especially herpes), stomach or digestive problems, osteoporosis, or myasthenia gravis.
  • Do not stop using this medicine suddenly without asking your doctor. You may need to slowly decrease your dose before stopping it completely.
  • Avoid people who are sick or have infections, because you may get sick more easily. If you are exposed to chickenpox or measles, tell your doctor right away.
  • Tell your doctor if you have any events causing unusual stress or anxiety in your life. Your dose of this medicine may need to be changed.
  • If your symptoms do not improve or if they get worse, call your doctor.
  • Make sure any doctor or dentist who treats you knows that you are using this medicine.

Possible Side Effects While Using This Medicine

Call your doctor right away if you notice any of these side effects:

  • Allergic reaction: Itching or hives, swelling in your face or hands, swelling or tingling in your mouth or throat, chest tightness, trouble breathing
  • Headache, eye pain, or trouble seeing.
  • Increased urination or thirst.
  • Muscle weakness or cramps.
  • Seizures, dizziness.
  • Stomach problems, stomach pain, bloody or black stools.
  • Sudden pain, swelling, or loss of movement in the lower leg.
  • Swelling in your hands, ankles, or feet, rapid weight gain.

If you notice these less serious side effects, talk with your doctor:

  • Mood changes, trouble sleeping, unusual behavior.
  • Redness in your face.
  • Weight gain, increased hair growth, roundness or swelling of your face, thinning skin.

If you notice other side effects that you think are caused by this medicine, tell your doctor

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088

Version Info

  • Last Reviewed on 06/12/2013

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This page was last updated: June 18, 2013

         
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