Experience From - Jay Hodde#1, PK Brown , Unknown , Terri , Kevin O'Neall , Jay Hodde#2
"My question: My Dr. (highly respected with runners) had me use prednisone which took the Achilles pain away within a few days and has allowed me to run more than I have in 1.5 yrs. I will have to see if it lasts long-term. Some on the listserv have expressed concern"Oral steroids are great pain blockers. Unfortunately, as runners who are trying anything to remain out on the roads, we assume that the lack of pain means things are OK. Don't be fooled! If you are taking an oral steroid for an overuse injury, I don't think I'd be trying to run very much -- you aren't helping the injury.
"About the side-effects of prednisone. To my understanding these side-effects only come with long-term use."In the case of most oral corticoid's, depression of the HPA axis begins in as little as two weeks at therapeutic dosing.
"I'm now having some heel pain and my Dr. told me to take a few more doses of prednisone, using it a little like ibuprofen except shorter term (3 or 4 days). Have others out there used prednisone like this? How has it worked? Any side effects?"Again, I'd do it (or even try Aleve or Orudis over the counter -- NSAIDS tend to be safer and quite effective) but I'd be careful of masking the pain and making things worse. How about taking a couple of days off, avoiding the drugs, and enjoying some time off?
As one who gathers wild mushrooms here in N. California, I come in contact with a bit of poison oak...to relieve the resulting itching and swelling I've taken prednisone.
In a word: terrific! Not only does it relieve the symptoms of the p.o. it gave me incredible energy and endurance. Enough to dust Rocket and several others on a 26 mile run on Mt. Tam (on little or no training). It could easily be addictive! If it wasn't for liver considerations I'd be popping it now and sending my miserable running career into orbit! (Maybe an UR cover, big endorsements, the respect of aid station personnel, and the adulation of the runners on the 'net!).
"I'm now having some heel pain and my Dr. told me to take a few more doses of prednisone, using it a little like ibuprofen except shorter term (3 or 4 days). Have others out there used prednisone like this? How has it worked? Any side effects?I can't speak of the ill-effects of prednisone, but once I took 800mg. Ibuprofin to reduce the pain when doing the Lewis and Clark run across the state of Washington in 1989 (508 miles in 8 days of stage running.) I finished that day OK but when the drug wore off I was in excruciating pain and I had done so much damage to tissues that I had to drop out...still my only DNF ever. The advice humbly offered from this runner? Never take pain killers when you have more miles to cover...wait until after your event is over (if you take 'em at all).
Prednisone is an oral steroid used as an anti-inflammatory. One thing you really need to watch while taking this drug is delayed wound healing. This can lead to serious infections. Take extra precautions with your blisters! Also, if you have a fungal infections (i.e. yeast) this medicine will make it grow like crazy!
The MD may have prescribed a steroid because in some cases an injury will be completely healed but there is still pain. There are several theories for this, such as nerve tissue retaining a "memory" of the injury. If the injury is healed, steroids are safe as pain relievers, but will still have an effect on the body over time. In some cases it's safer to get an injection of long-acting steroid into the site. Lower doses are used and there is less affect on the pituitary-adrenal axis.
Three years ago I had a tarsal plate injury which caused pain for 6 months, before I went to the podiatrist. One intralesional injection of Betamethasone took the pain away permanently.
"This, such as nerve tissue retaining a "memory" of the injury. If the injury is healed, steroids are safe as pain relievers, but will still have an effect on the body over time. In some cases it's safer to get an injection of long-acting steroid into the site. Lower doses are used and there is less affect on the pituitary-adrenal axis."I would like to clarify something: "into the site" is misleading, because that could be taken to mean "into the tendon." If my doctor were going to inject my tendon, I'd be to my lawyer right away -- the practice is dangerous and can dramatically decrease the strength of the tendon (in fact, the practice increases the risk of complete tendon rupture).
Instead, if I were told that an injection "AROUND the tendon" would benefit me, I'd allow it -- but only as a last resort.