How It Works
in the lungs. They also decrease
and make it easier for the person to breathe.
Corticosteroids can be given as a pill or liquid, as an injection, or with an
. The kind of corticosteroid that will be
prescribed depends on what symptoms are being treated.
Why It Is Used
Corticosteroids are widely used to
treat many different types of inflammation. They have been tested for use in
treating lung inflammation in
. At this time, they are recommended
only for people who have significant shortness of breath and
or an infection caused by a fungus (allergic
Oral corticosteroids are usually
used only for short periods of time because of the side effects. Inhaled forms
may be used for longer periods of time.
How Well It Works
Corticosteroids are the most
powerful medicines for reducing inflammation in the lungs. More research is
needed to find out the specific benefits and potential harmful side effects for
people who have cystic fibrosis.
All medicines have side effects. But many people don't feel the side effects, or they are able to deal with them. Ask your pharmacist about the side effects of each medicine you take. Side effects are also listed in the information that comes with your medicine.
Here are some important things to think about:
- Usually the benefits of the medicine are more important than any minor side effects.
- Side effects may go away after you take the medicine for a while.
- If side effects still bother you and you wonder if you should keep taking the medicine, call your doctor. He or she may be able to lower your dose or change your medicine. Do not suddenly quit taking your medicine unless your doctor tells you to.
Call 911 or other emergency services right away if you have:
- Trouble breathing.
- Swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.
Common side effects of oral corticosteroids include:
- Increased appetite.
- Feeling nervous or restless.
Side effects of inhaled corticosteroids are uncommon at the usual dose. Side effects (many of which occur only with high doses) may include:
- Sore mouth, sore throat, or hoarseness.
- Cough and spasms of the large airways (bronchi).
- Fungus infection in the mouth ().
- Temporary growth delay in children.
- Decreased bone thickness in adults.
- Clouding of the lens of the eye ().
- High blood pressure in the eye or fluid buildup in the eye (). This may occur with high doses of inhaled corticosteroids used over a long period of time.