As soon as I hear “steroids,” the first thing you might think of is whether I will become the face of the moon, and then there are many horrible pictures. Therefore, the medicine prescribed by the doctor can be discounted at a discount, and it can be eaten once less if it is eaten once every other day. Eventually, the condition may be fluctuating or worsening.
What is steroid? The correct name for steroids is “adrenal cortical hormone”, which has strong anti-inflammatory and immunomodulatory effects. For some inflammatory diseases such as many autoimmune diseases (such as lupus erythematosus, dermatomyositis, multiple muscles) Inflammation, glomerulonephritis, inflammatory arthritis, scleroderma, vasculitis), asthma, allergic disease, intractable eczema, anaphylactic shock, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, brain edema, some inflammatory nerves The therapeutic effects of lesions and cancers (such as lymphoma) often have immediate effects, so many of them are called American elixir.
For such a “magic medicine”, everyone’s psychology is love and fear, because even the American elixir, there are still some possible side effects and matters that should be noted. The side effects of steroids that patients often worry about are: moon face, fat, buffalo shoulder, osteoporosis, thin skin, edema, easy infection, acne, low length, rising blood sugar, increased infection rate, oral mold infection, increased body hair The wound healing power is worse, and there are also myths that steroids can damage the kidneys or accumulate in the body. In fact, under the cautious use of experienced physicians, “steroids” are the elixir that cures people, but improper use can of course cause side effects. It is like a sword. It can save people and hurt people. All drugs are like this. Therefore, if you can follow the doctor’s instructions to take the drug, and then adjust the dose according to the condition, you can let the steroids play the best role in the treatment process while avoiding side effects, which requires sufficient patience and the doctor’s instructions.
There are many types of steroid-containing preparations, which can be roughly classified into oral, injectable, inhaled, and external. The following is especially for the myth that patients often have, one by one:
Q1. Why do I need steroids for my illness?
The so-called immune system disease means that the immune system in the body is out of control, and it produces a phenomenon of attacking itself. Steroids can regain control of the dysfunctional immune system like a hi-hat. Therefore, the doctor will treat with a larger dose of steroids in the early stage, just like the fire team should use the big water to save the fire when the fire is extended, so that the disease can be well controlled in a short time.
Q2. I have a good control recently. Can I stop taking it myself?
Absolutely not. Because the human body secretes about 7.5 mg of internal physiological steroids (cortisol) every day, and there is a physiological cycle. In the morning, the body has the highest amount of cortisone, and the lowest point in the afternoon. When taking more than three steroids for a long time and lasting for more than three months, this automatic secretion function will be inhibited. If the drug is suddenly stopped, symptoms of adrenal insufficiency such as general weakness, vomiting, and hypotension will occur. Or body aches and discomfort. Many patients suddenly discontinue steroids due to a cold, leading to hypotension and shock response, and special attention should be paid. However, this does not mean that you must not reduce the medicine or you will take the medicine for life!
(Cortisone is the main glucocorticosteroid in the body, synthesized and secreted by the adrenal cortex, controlled by hormones such as CRH and ACTH secreted by the hypothalamus and pituitary gland. It is a necessity in life. Control the metabolism of carbohydrates, proteins and lipids, maintain normal blood pressure, and suppress allergies and inflammatory reactions.)
Q3. I heard people say that eating steroids can cause edema?
If the amount of steroids is more than four times a day, it may cause edema in the body due to the accumulation of water and salt. This is not the result of steroids damaging the kidneys. So while taking steroids, just eat too salty foods, avoid pickled or conditioned foods (if you must eat canned food, look at the ingredients on the label and make sure that each serving contains no more than 140-200 mg of salt. ), pay attention to changes in body weight every day, you can reduce the phenomenon of edema.
Q4. I heard that eating steroids will become fat, and there will be a moon face and a buffalo shoulder. When you eat steroids, you will become very fat and swollen.
These phenomena and the amount of steroid use are time-dependent and slowly improve after stopping taking steroids. When you first start eating steroids, most people will become more appetizing, and they will be hungry. The more hungry they eat, the more they eat, the less they exercise, and the fat will sneak up. Eating four steroids a day has the opportunity to redistribute fat and begin to have rounded faces, buffalo shoulders or obesity. However, these side effects will slowly return to normal as the amount of steroids is reduced and the diet is controlled. If you control the calories of food and the intake of starch and sugar during the period of using steroids, you can maintain a good appearance and body.
Q5. I heard people say that eating steroids can cause osteoporosis?
Not every patient taking steroids can cause osteoporosis. In general, taking more than four steroids a day for more than three to six months is more likely to cause osteoporosis. In daily life, you can increase your calcium intake (at least 1500 mg per day), use calcium tablets, and eat more calcium foods (such as milk, about 300 mg of calcium, cheese products, dried fish, Pork ribs soup, spinach, sesame seeds, hairy vegetables, soybeans, etc., vitamin D supplementation (400 IU/day), proper weight-bearing exercise (such as walking or Tai Chi, etc.), avoiding prolonged bed rest, abstaining from tobacco and alcohol, etc., can reduce bone mass Loss.
Q6. I have diabetes. What should I pay attention to when eating steroids?
Short-term use of higher doses of steroids (eight to twelve per day) may increase blood sugar. If you have diabetes, in addition to the usual control of diabetes diet, pay more attention to the measurement of blood sugar. In addition, physicians may use injectable insulin or increase the amount of oral hypoglycemic agents in the short term to make blood sugar control more stable.
Q7. I am taking steroids, will it hurt my stomach? Need to take stomach medicine?
Taking steroids alone without the combination of analgesic and anti-inflammatory drugs does not increase the chance of gastrointestinal bleeding; however, some patients may feel stomach irritation, or they can use stomach medicine.
Q8. How can I avoid infection during the period of taking steroids?
Taking more than four steroids a day may be more susceptible to infection or oral mold infection. In addition to paying attention to the cleansing of the wounds and the health of the oral hygiene, if there is mold in the mouth, the doctor will give you a mouthwash treatment; in addition, reduce the number of public places where people enter and exit, and wear masks and wash hands frequently to avoid infection. opportunity.
Q9. What should I do if I forget to take the medicine during the day?
Please try not to forget to take the medicine, and do not increase or decrease the medicine by yourself. If you forget to take it in the morning, you can take it as soon as possible; if you are close to the time of the next dose, you don’t need to take it.
Q10. What is pulse therapy?
The so-called steroid pulse therapy is to inject a large dose of methyl steroid (a type of steroid) in a short period of time to achieve a stronger anti-inflammatory and immune regulation ability, so that the disease can be controlled in a short time, just like the fire brigade In the case of firefighting, using a lot of water to extinguish the fire can make the disease get a quick control.
Q11. Do I have to use steroid pulse therapy? Will there be any discomfort or side effects?
In general, the physician will choose to use pulse therapy, usually the degree of inflammation of the disease is more serious. At this time, if you do not use large doses of anti-inflammatory drugs for treatment, the condition may be more difficult to control. After pulse treatment, the dose of oral steroids is relatively easy to reduce. During pulse therapy, there may be redness and fever in the face. This feeling will slowly disappear after the drug is injected. Some patients may suffer from insomnia due to mental excitement. At this time, a small amount of sleeping pills can be used for a short time. Come to help. In patients with diabetes, during the pulse treatment, blood sugar may increase, and blood sugar should be more actively controlled. Some patients may have elevated blood pressure, and special attention should be paid.
Q12. Will the use of steroid pulse therapy reduce my immunity?
When using large doses of steroids, it may inhibit the body’s immune function. Therefore, before the injection, if there is cavities, otitis media, sinusitis or urinary pain, please tell the doctor or the caregiver first, the doctor will assess your condition and then decide whether you can use pulse therapy. In addition, two weeks after receiving pulse treatment, try to reduce access to public places, such as cinemas, or go out to wear masks and wash hands frequently to reduce infection.
Q13. What is inhaled steroid?
Inhaled steroids are the first line of medication for asthma patients, which can effectively slow down the inflammation of the airways and reduce the chance of asthma attacks. Therefore, when the airway or nasal cavity of such patients is severely inflamed, inhaled steroids are needed to achieve disease control goals.
Q14. Do I use inhaled steroids all my life?
Patients with allergic rhinitis and asthma have persistent chronic inflammation of the respiratory tract. In general, if you are only a mild intermittent asthmatic patient, you can use it intermittently; but if you have a seizure every day, you should use it for a long time, otherwise asthma or rhinitis will be difficult to control.
Q15. What is a steroid cream?
If there is local inflammation of the skin, such as cutaneous vasculitis, more severe dermatitis, drug allergy, atopic dermatitis or eczema, the doctor will use a topical topical synthetic steroid cream to accelerate the improvement of skin inflammation. . However, if the skin wound is infected, you should not use a steroid cream.
Q16. What are the side effects of steroid creams?
Apply a small area to the skin, less than five grams per day, generally no side effects. However, if used improperly, local skin may have atrophy, shrinkage, vasodilation and bruising. General practitioners are very cautious about local side effects, so avoid buying any ointment in the pharmacy to avoid excessive use.
When using steroids, if the side effects can be avoided in the shortest possible time, use the appropriate dose to achieve its maximum efficacy, so that the patient’s disease can be controlled, and after appropriate drug reduction or withdrawal, the disease is not Will relapse or rebound, is the highest level of steroid use. To achieve this goal, the patient itself needs to cooperate with the physician. In addition, don’t believe in the improper advice of remedies and friends, and have a higher chance of stable disease control, so that patients who use steroids can get the most help!