Dexamethasone – Uses, Side Effects, Warnings, and More
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The steroid dexamethasone is administered intravenously to patients suffering from ailments such as arthritis, blood and hormone disorders, allergic reactions, skin diseases, eye issues, respiratory problems, intestinal disorders, cancer, and disorders of the immune system.
In addition to this, it is a diagnostic tool for the condition known as Cushing syndrome, which affects the adrenal glands. Dexamethasone is a member of the corticosteroid medicine class, which also includes other medications. It does this by dampening the response of your immune system to a variety of diseases, which in turn reduces symptoms such as swelling and allergic-like reactions.
Instructions for taking dexamethasone by mouth
Consume this drug by mouth and follow your physician’s instructions. Take this medicine with food or milk to avoid upsetting your stomach. If your doctor has not instructed you otherwise, take this medication in tablet form with a full glass of water (eight ounces or 240 milliliters), unless you have been told to do otherwise. If you are taking this medication in liquid form, you will need to measure the amount with a special measuring instrument or spoon to ensure accurate dosing. You should not use a regular spoon since you run the risk of not getting the right amount.
If you just need to take this medicine once a day, make sure to do so first thing in the morning, well before 9 o’clock. It is a good idea to put a note on your calendar as a reminder if you are taking this medication every other day or on any other schedule other than daily if you are not taking it continuously.
Your current health status and how well you respond to treatment will determine the dosage that you take and how long the treatment will last. Take this medication precisely as directed by your doctor. Take special care to adhere to the dosing schedule. It’s possible that your doctor will try to lower your dosage gradually at some point so as to limit the severity of any adverse effects.
It is important that you speak with your healthcare provider before discontinuing the use of this medicine. It is possible that certain conditions will become even more severe if you suddenly stop taking this medication. In addition, you can have symptoms such as sickness, lightheadedness, weakness, or discomfort in your muscles or joints. Your physician may gradually reduce your dosage of this medication in order to prevent these symptoms while you are withdrawing from therapy with this drug. Consult your doctor or pharmacist for more details. Notify your doctor immediately of any symptoms that are new or that have worsened.
If your situation does not improve or if it gets worse, you should let your doctor know.
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There is a possibility that you will get an upset stomach, heartburn, headache, difficulty sleeping, or an increase in hunger. Notify your doctor or pharmacist as soon as possible if any of these side effects continue or become worse.
Keep in mind that the reason your doctor has recommended that you take this medication is that he or she believes that the potential benefits to you outweigh the potential risks of doing so. The majority of persons who take this medicine do not report experiencing any severe adverse effects.
Notify your physician as soon as possible if you experience any serious side effects, such as signs of infection (such as a persistent sore throat, fever), bone or joint pain, fast/slow/irregular heartbeat, eye pain or pressure, vision problems, unusual weight gain, puffy face, swelling of the ankles or feet, symptoms of a stomach or intestinal bleeding (such as stomach/abdominal pain, black or tarry stools, vomit that looks like coffee grounds), mental or mood changes
It is possible that this drug will induce a slight elevation in your blood sugar, which can either bring on diabetes or make the condition worse. If you have symptoms of high blood sugar such as excessive thirst or urine, you should contact your doctor as soon as possible. If you have diabetes already, you should have your blood sugar checked on a regular basis as instructed by your doctor and discuss the results with him or her. It’s possible that your diabetic medication, exercise routine, or diet will need some tweaking from your doctor.
It is quite unusual for this medicine to cause an extremely severe allergic reaction. However, you should seek immediate medical attention if you observe any symptoms of a major allergic response, such as a rash, itching/swelling (particularly of the face/tongue/throat), severe dizziness, or difficulty breathing. These symptoms include:
This list of potential adverse effects is not exhaustive in any way. Please consult your physician or pharmacist if you have any side effects that are not listed above.
In the United States, if you are experiencing any adverse effects, please consult your primary care physician. You can call the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088 or visit their website at www.fda.gov/medwatch to report any adverse effects.
In Canada, if you are experiencing any adverse effects, please consult your primary care physician. You can call Health Canada at 1-866-234-2345 to report any adverse effects you experience.
Inform your doctor or pharmacist if you are allergic to dexamethasone, or if you have any other allergies, before beginning treatment with this medication. There is a possibility that this product contains inactive substances, which, if present, could result in allergic responses or other complications. Discuss the matter further with your pharmacist for further information.
Before beginning treatment with this medication, it is important to discuss your medical history with your doctor or pharmacist, particularly any of the following conditions: infections (such as tuberculosis, herpes, fungal infections); kidney disease; liver disease; mental/mood disorders (such as psychosis, anxiety, depression); mineral imbalance (such as low level of potassium/calcium in the blood); thyroid disease; stomach/intestinal problems (such as ulcer, ulcerative colitis, diverticulitis, unexplain
When taken for an extended period of time, corticosteroid drugs can make it more challenging for your body to respond to the effects of physical stress. Tell your doctor or dentist if you are currently taking this drug or if you have taken it within the previous year if you are going to have surgery, emergency treatment, or if you develop a serious sickness or accident. Notify your primary care physician as soon as possible if you experience unusual or acute tiredness or if you begin to lose weight. If you are going to be taking this drug for an extended period of time, you should wear a medical ID bracelet or carry a caution card that identifies the medication that you are taking.
It’s possible that this drug will hide the symptoms of an illness. It may increase your risk of getting infections or cause any illnesses you already have to become worse. Stay away from those who might be carrying infectious diseases that could be passed on to other people (such as chickenpox, measles, flu). If you suspect that you may have been exposed to an infection or for further information, please see a physician.
This medication could cause bleeding in the stomach. Consuming alcohol on a regular basis while you are on this medication may raise the risk of gastrointestinal bleeding. Reduce your intake of alcoholic beverages. For further information, please speak with either your physician or pharmacist.
Before receiving any immunizations or vaccinations, you should disclose to your health care provider that you are currently taking dexamethasone. Keep your distance from anyone who has received a live vaccine within the past several months (such as flu vaccine inhaled through the nose).
This drug is available in a liquid version, which may contain sugar and/or alcohol. If you have diabetes, liver illness, or any other condition that requires you to limit or avoid the consumption of these chemicals in your diet, you should exercise extreme caution. Talk to your primary care physician or your local pharmacist about the proper use of this medicine.
It’s possible that senior citizens are more susceptible to the adverse effects of this medication, particularly bone loss and pain, stomach and intestinal bleeding, and mental and emotional problems (such as confusion).
If taken over an extended period of time, this medicine could potentially impair a child’s growth. For further information, speak with either your physician or pharmacist. Make regular trips to the paediatrician so that the doctor can monitor your child’s height and progress.
During pregnancy, it is important to only use this drug when it is absolutely necessary. There is a small chance that it could harm an unborn child. Talk to your healthcare provider about the potential drawbacks and advantages. There is a possibility of hormone imbalance in children born to women who have been taking this drug for an extended period of time. If you find that your infant is experiencing symptoms such as persistent nausea or vomiting, severe diarrhoea, or weakness, you should contact their doctor as soon as possible.
There is no evidence to suggest that this medicine makes its way into breast milk. Before you start breastfeeding, you should talk to your doctor.
Drug interactions can alter the way in which your prescriptions work or raise the likelihood that you will have major adverse effects. This paper does not include all of the potential medication interactions that could occur. Maintain a list of all the goods you use, including prescription and over-the-counter medications, as well as herbal remedies, and give it to both your primary care physician and your pharmacist. Without first consulting your physician, you should never alter the dosage of any medication, stop taking any medication, or start taking any new medication.
Aldesleukin, medications that can cause bleeding or bruising (including antiplatelet drugs such as clopidogrel, “blood thinners” such as dabigatran/warfarin, and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as aspirin/celecoxib/ibuprofen), and mifepristone are some examples of products that may interact with this medication.
This medicine has the potential to hasten the elimination of other medications from your body, which may have an effect on how those medications function. Among the list of affected medications are the cancer treatments dasatinib, lapatinib, and sunitinib, as well as praziquantel and rilpivirine, among other medications.
You should continue taking low-dose aspirin for the prevention of heart attack or stroke (typically 81-162 mg per day), unless your doctor directs you otherwise. If your doctor has advised you to take low-dose aspirin, you should continue taking it. Inquire with your primary care physician or your pharmacist for further information.
This medicine has the potential to interfere with a variety of laboratory procedures, including skin tests, and could result in inaccurate test findings. Ensure that the staff at the lab and all of your physicians are aware that you are using this medication.
Dial 911 if you suspect that someone has overdosed and they are exhibiting serious symptoms such as passing out or having problems breathing. In any other case, you should immediately contact a poison control centre. To reach the poison control centre for your area in the United States, dial 1-800-222-1222. Canada residents can call a provincial poison control centre.
This drug should not be given to anyone else.
While you are under the influence of this medication, you should get a number of medical tests, including bone density tests, blood pressure checks, complete blood counts, blood mineral levels, glucose levels in the blood, and complete blood counts. You should also get your blood pressure checked and have your eyes checked. Make sure you don’t miss any of your doctor or lab appointments. Consult your doctor for additional details.
When taken over an extended period of time, this medicine could result in problems with the bones (osteoporosis). Alterations to one’s lifestyle, such as engaging in weight-bearing activity, consuming an adequate amount of calcium and vitamin D, quitting smoking, and reducing the amount of alcohol consumed, may help minimise the risk of bone disorders. Talk to your healthcare provider about making any adjustments to your lifestyle that might be beneficial to you.
If you are taking this medication on a daily basis and on a set schedule, and you forget to take a dose, you should take it as soon as you remember because it could have serious consequences. If it is getting close to the time of the next dose, you should forgo the dose that you missed. Your next dose should be taken at the typical time. It is not necessary to double the dose in order to catch up.
If you are taking this medication every other day or are gradually reducing your dose, and you miss a dose, you should consult your physician or pharmacist as soon as possible to establish a new dosing schedule for you.
Keep at room temperature and away from light and moisture. Store at room temperature. Keep away from the bathroom at all costs. Always make sure that children and animals are kept well away from any medications.
Unless you have been specifically told to do so, you should not flush drugs down the toilet or pour them down a drain. When it is no longer needed or has passed its expiration date, dispose of this product in the appropriate manner. Talk to your neighbourhood pharmacy or the firm that handles garbage disposal in your area.