Steroid Side Effects

side effects of long term steroid use

If you are using steroids for a long period of time, there are certain side effects you may experience. Some of these include hyperglycemia, diabetes, and growth impairment in children. Fortunately, there are medications available that will help you manage these problems.

Growth impairment

The use of steroids has been linked to a number of adverse effects, including growth retardation. However, little is known about the exact magnitude of these effects. This may be due to the fact that steroids have a wide range of doses and side effects. It is therefore important for health care providers to be aware of the risks associated with steroid use and the proper dosing of corticosteroids.

There are a number of factors that go into evaluating the best possible treatment for a given patient, and growth is one of them. A review of the literature indicates that growth inhibition is a common complication of steroid use in children. Fortunately, treatment has improved, and mortality rates have dropped. But the relapse rate is still about 70%. Hence, individualized treatment is necessary for patients with NS.

Steroids are typically used as a first line treatment in nephrotic syndrome, but they can also cause other side effects. Among the most notable are increased risk for infection and obesity. Therefore, it is important for health care professionals to monitor these patients and prescribe appropriate lifestyle habits to avoid such pitfalls.

Other notable effects of steroid use include elevation of intraocular pressure and glaucomatous visual field defects. These can be reduced by screening patients for risk factors and referring them for further evaluation. Another potential hazard is the development of diabetes mellitus. Several clinical trials have shown conflicting results. For this reason, it is vital to educate patients about these risks before allowing them to proceed with steroid therapy.

The best way to prevent ocular emergencies is to provide early and appropriate medical attention when symptoms appear. In addition, a comprehensive ocular examination should be performed in patients who have cataracts.

Peptic ulcer disease

Peptic ulcer disease occurs when digestive juices damage the lining of the stomach or duodenum. Severe ulceration typically causes significant pain and can result in a blockage. This can lead to perforation, a life-threatening condition. It can be caused by alcohol, tobacco, and certain medications. Medications are used to treat peptic ulcers and prevent them from occurring again.

An individual with peptic ulcer disease is at a higher risk of developing bleeding if he or she takes NSAIDs or corticosteroids. Studies have shown that the risk of peptic ulcer bleeding is greater when a patient uses non-selective NSAIDs, such as aspirin. However, selective COX-2 inhibitors, such as fenofibrate, are available to reduce this risk.

If you’ve been diagnosed with peptic ulcer disease, your doctor may recommend taking a course of antibiotics. These medications kill the bacteria responsible for peptic ulcers and can help prevent them from coming back.

Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), such as aspirin, are also a known cause of peptic ulcers. If you take them for longer than a few months, you’re at an increased risk of developing peptic ulcers.

Corticosteroids, on the other hand, suppress the autoimmune response that causes peptic ulcers. They may also inhibit gastric mucosal injury and arachidonic acid metabolism, two important enzymes that are important in the regulation of acid secretion.

Peptic ulcers can occur in any age group. Men have twice the risk of developing peptic ulcers compared to women. Risk is highest in those ages 55 to 65.

In addition, peptic ulcers are more likely to develop in individuals with H pylori infection. About half of the population worldwide is infected with H. pylori. While experts don’t know what factors contribute to the increased risk of H. pylori infection, they do know that it’s strongly associated with several cancers.


Glaucoma is a serious eye disease that develops when the pressure inside the eye rises. Raised eye pressure damages the nerve fibers in the retina. The damage can be permanent and may affect the visual field. If you are experiencing glaucoma, you may have blurred vision, eye pain or a decrease in the peripheral vision. It is important to consult an ophthalmologist for a thorough ocular examination and to be referred for IOP monitoring.

There are several risk factors for glaucoma. These include a family history of glaucoma, high myopia, diabetes mellitus, and connective tissue disease. Risk is also increased in people with a high sensitivity to steroid medications. Patients who have these conditions should be warned to reduce their steroid use.

Steroids are commonly prescribed to patients to treat a wide variety of medical conditions. They are found in prescription pills, shampoo, and inhalers. As such, they are often the first line of treatment for many blinding diseases. But they can cause several ocular side effects, such as eye inflammation, cataracts, and corneal edema.

A significant increase in intraocular pressure can occur after topical steroid or intravenous steroid use. This rise in pressure usually occurs within 3 to 6 weeks after steroid use. Although most individuals will show a moderate rise in their IOP (6-15 mm Hg), a few will experience a more dramatic increase.

Patients who are at high risk for steroid induced glaucoma should receive frequent monitoring of their intraocular pressure. Early detection and intervention can help prevent this condition from developing.

Other ocular side effects associated with steroids include corneal edema, black adrenochrome deposits, and increased risk of infection. In addition, a bitter metallic taste may be caused by drainage from the tear ducts.

Hyperglycemia/diabetes in children

Hyperglycemia, or high blood glucose, is a common complication in patients with diabetes. However, it can be dangerous if left untreated. Usually, it develops gradually over several days and is not associated with any immediate symptoms. The American Diabetes Association recommends monitoring glucose levels and adjusting insulin doses if the levels are too high. In addition, the use of dietary supplements can be beneficial for children taking regular steroid therapy.

Some medications, including steroid treatments, may increase the risk of developing hyperglycemia. This is because steroids work by increasing the secretion of the hormone cortisol. Cortisol helps the body respond to stressful events.

Stress hyperglycemia is a condition that occurs when blood sugar rises above normal. It is caused by physical and emotional stress. Several studies have linked adverse clinical outcomes to stress hyperglycemia.

Patients with glaucoma are also at risk. If you are concerned, your ophthalmologist can provide a comprehensive ocular assessment. Your doctor can advise you on appropriate medication. A continuous glucose monitor is available to help you determine your basal rate.

While you are undergoing long-term systemic steroid therapy, it is important to have a thorough history. Risk factors for developing GC-induced diabetes in children include obesity, hypertension, and dyslipidemia. Children on regular steroid treatment should be advised to take plenty of calcium, vitamin D, and other nutrients.

GC-induced hyperglycemia usually subsides when the steroid is discontinued. Treatment of GC-induced hyperglycemia in children requires a multidisciplinary pediatric diabetes healthcare team.

A child’s steroid dosage will depend on his or her weight. If the child becomes extremely unwell, the steroid dosage may need to be increased. Also, if the child takes steroid pills at home, the dosage can be adjusted to compensate for the effect of the steroid on his or her body.

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