Prednisone is a medication intended to replace or boost the body's own levels of corticosteroids. This class of hormones is extremely important and acts on a wide range of body functions. Therefore, the side effects of prednisone are equally wide-ranging. They include:
- immune system suppression and vulnerability to variety of infections
- altered glucose metabolism with hyperglycemia and diabetes
- altered water and electrolyte retention with swelling or edema
Long-term use can cause serious reduction in natural corticosteroid levels. Other long-term effects are:
- impaired tissue growth including delayed healing and weakened joints
- abnormal body fat metabolism
These are just a few of the common side effects; a comprehensive list should be consulted for more information.