Drugs Home > Prednisone

Prednisone is a prescription drug that is used to help decrease inflammation and suppress an overactive immune system. The medication comes in either liquid or tablet form and is taken just once a day or several times a day, depending on the condition being treated. Some side effects that have been reported with prednisone include high blood pressure, headaches, and stomach irritation.

What Is Prednisone?

Prednisone is a prescription medication used to treat a wide variety of conditions. It is part of a group of medications known as glucocorticoids, corticosteroids, or simply "steroids" for short.
 
(Click Prednisone Uses for more information on what the drug is used for, including possible off-label uses.)
 

Who Makes Prednisone?

It is made by numerous manufacturers of generic medications.
 

How Does It Work?

Prednisone is part of a group of medications called glucocorticoids. These medicines are a type of corticosteroid, or "steroid" for short. Prednisone is similar to glucocorticoids that occur naturally in the body.
 
Although glucocorticoids have numerous affects in the body, they are used mostly for their anti-inflammatory or immune-suppressing properties. This drug works for most conditions by decreasing inflammation or suppressing an overactive immune system.
 
When prednisone is taken for more than a few weeks, the body becomes accustomed to it and begins to make less of its natural steroids. If it is stopped too quickly, the body does not have time to adjust, and dangerous side effects can occur (see Prednisone Withdrawal).
 
Written by/reviewed by:
Last reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;
Last updated/reviewed:
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