Prednisone Side Effects And Warnings

Learn Facts and Information About Prednisone, Both Side Effects and Benefits

Side Effects of Prednisone in Men

Prednisone Side Effects in Men

Prednisone is a steroidal anti-inflammatory drug, also known as a corticosteroid[1]. Common side effects in men include headaches and irregular sleep-wake rhythm. Most men treated with this drug can have mood swings which may lead to abnormal behaviour and, eventually, can cause depression and personality change. They should pay extra attention while driving because Prednisone may cause dizziness and tiredness. Also, people taking prednisone may get easily distracted by noises while driving or even lose contact with reality due to confusion. In addition, side effects such as hand, feet and leg numbness, eye pain, and shaking hands may also affect driving ability.

Men may also suffer skin problems, such as acne, fragile skin, red spots or lines under the skin, itching and rash[2]. During Prednisone treatment sebaceous gland activity is increased, and more sebum is produced than normal. This leads to hair follicles becoming clogged and acne papules and pustules appearing on the skin, mostly on the face and shoulder areas. Men may also bruise easily due to thin skin syndrome.

A major side effect of this drug is stomach pain, along with other digestive symptoms like vomiting and stomach swelling. This is why Prednisone is not suitable for patients with intestinal afflictions (e.g. gastritis or ulcers)[3]. In order to avoid or at least to reduce the gastrointestinal side effects of Prednisone, you should take one pill at a time, with a meal. The pills can be taken with plain water or sugar-free drinks, especially for patients with diabetes, as corticosteroids can lead to a rise in blood sugar level. Even non-diabetics can develop "steroid-induced diabetes", referring to hyperglycaemia caused by glucocorticoid therapy.

Another side effect of Prednisone is abnormal fat distribution in the body and excessive body hair. Men under treatment can suffer from weight gain and fat redistribution. This can cause "buffalo hump", which is where fat accumulates in the back of the neck. Fat may also accumulate around the collarbone or other neck areas. If you suffer from myasthenia gravis or any other muscular syndromes, you should not take Prednisone, because you may experience muscular side effects too, for example muscle weakening, seizures, muscle tightening and contractions.

With any age or sexual status, Prednisone may cause a lower sex drive[4]. However in a few cases, libido increases during treatment. Another side effect is hypertension, which can usually be eliminated by reducing the corticosteroid dose.

Prednisone may lead to immune suppression, so you should take more vitamins and supplements in order to prevent infections. Vitamins, especially Vitamin C, can help the body fight against germs. There is an increased risk of fungal and bacterial infections like candidiasis, caused by Candida albicans. If you have a gastrointestinal disease the risk of infection is even higher, because the pH of the saliva will be more acidic[5]. Vesicles may develop inside the mouth or on the surface of the tongue. Infections may also be hidden inside the digestive tract where the main symptoms of infection are fever and sore throat.


  1. Pinel J., Naboulet C., Weiss F., Henkens M., Grouzard V., Medecins Sans Frontieres, Essential Drugs - Practical Guidelines, 2013
  2. Jones & Bartlett Learning, Nurse's Drug Handbook Tenth Edition, 2011
  3. Pinel J., Naboulet C., Weiss F., Henkens M., Grouzard V., Medecins Sans Frontieres, Essential Drugs - Practical Guidelines, 2013
  4. Jones & Bartlett Learning, Nurse's Drug Handbook Tenth Edition, 2011
  5. Crivineanu M., Nicorescu V., Ed. Printech, Basis of Pharmacology, 2016

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