Steroids are one option for back pain medications that may be used for pain management. Solutions for pain relief provided by KBNI.

Corticosteroids For Back Pain

For Lower Back Pain Management

Steroids are synthetic drugs that closely resemble cortisol, a hormone that your body produces naturally. Steroids decrease inflammation and reduce activity of the immune system, and are used to treat various inflammatory diseases and conditions.

*Corticosteroids are not be confused with anabolic steroids, the drug which are used to build muscle mass.

Steroids can be administered topically (cream), orally (by mouth), or through injection. Steroid injections allow the medicine to be delivered directly into the vein or muscle, joint or bursa (lubricating sac between certain tendons and the bones beneath them) or around tendons and other soft tissue areas.

Low doses of steroids may provide significant relief from pain and stiffness in people with conditions such as Rheumatoid Arthritis. Temporary use of higher doses may help a patient recover from a severe flare-up of Arthritis. Consult with your physician on what treatment plan is best for you. Follow directions on the label carefully and ask your doctor or pharmacist to explain any part you do not understand. Take only as directed.

REMINDER: You should always talk to your doctor before beginning a new medication regimen. These suggestions do not to substitute for medical advice. Please consult your physician.

Types of Corticosteroids

Betamethasone

Brand Name(s): Celestone

Relieves: Inflammation due to arthritis, allergic reactions, asthma, some skin diseases, multiple sclerosis flare-ups, and other autoimmune disorders

Available over the counter: No

Mechanism of action: Betamethasone mimics the effects of the body’s natural corticosteroids and depresses the production, release and activity of inflammatory-producing substances

Side Effects

  • Common: Increased appetite, indigestion, nervousness, insomnia, susceptibility to infections, weight gain
  • Less common:Dizziness, headache, sweating, facial hair growth, peptic ulcers, muscle weakness

Note: Steroid medication can weaken your immune system, making it hard to fight off infection or illness. Tell your doctor about any infection or illness you have or have had before taking this medication.

Cortisone Oral

Brand Name(s): Cortone Acetate

Relieves: Inflammation due to arthritis, allergic conditions, asthma, skin disease, multiple sclerosis flare-ups, and other autoimmune disorders

Available Over-the-Counter: No

Mechanism of Action: Cortisone mimics the effects of the body's natural corticosteroids and reduces production, release and activity of inflammatory chemicals

Side Effects

  • Common: increased appetite, indigestion, nervousness, insomnia, slow healing of wounds
  • Less common: dizziness, headache, increased sweating, growth of facial hair, adrenal insufficiency
  • Serious: visual difficulties, increased thirst and urination, rectal bleeding, confusion, blistering skin, euphoria, depression

Note: Steroid medication can weaken your immune system, making it hard to fight off infection or illness. Tell your doctor about any infection or illness you have or have had before taking this medication.

Dexamethasone Systemic

Brand Name(s): Dejacect, Desxasone

Relieves: Inflammation due to arthritis, allergic conditions, asthma, skin diseases, multiple sclerosis flare-ups, other autoimmune disorders

Available Over-the-Counter: No

Mechanism of action: Dexamethasone mimics the effects of the body's natural corticosteroids, reduces production, release and activity of inflammatory chemicals, and suppresses immune system.

Side Effects

  • Common: increased appetite, indigestion, nervousness, insomnia, slow healing of wounds, increased susceptibility to infections
  • Less common: dizziness, headache, increased sweating, growth of facial hair, adrenal insufficiency
  • Serious: visual difficulties, increased thirst and urination, rectal bleeding, confusion, blistering skin, euphoria, depression

Note: Steroid medication can weaken your immune system, making it hard to fight off infection or illness. Tell your doctor about any infection or illness you have or have had before taking this medication.

Hydrocortisone Systemic

Brand Name(s): Cortef, Hydrocortone, Hydrocortone Acetate

Relieves: Inflammation due to arthritis, allergic conditions, asthma, skin diseases, multiple sclerosis flare-ups, and other autoimmune disorders

Available Over-the-Counter: No

Mechanism of action: Hydrocortisone mimics effects of body's natural corticosteroids, reduces production, release and activity of inflammatory chemicals, and suppresses immune system.

Side Effects

  • Common: Increased appetite, indigestion, nervousness, insomnia, slow healing of wounds, increased susceptibility to infections
  • Less common: Dizziness, headache, increased sweating, growth of facial hair, adrenal insufficiency
  • Serious: Visual difficulties, increased thirst and urination, rectal bleeding, confusion, blistering skin, euphoria, depression

Note: Steroid medication can weaken your immune system, making it hard to fight off infection or illness. Tell your doctor about any infection or illness you have or have had before taking this medication.

Methylprednisolone

Brand Name(s): Depo-Medrol, Medrol, Solu-Medrol

Relieves: Inflammation due to arthritis, allergic conditions, asthma, skin diseases, multiple sclerosis flare-ups, and other autoimmune disorders

Available Over-the-Counter: No

Mechanism of action: Mimics effects of body's natural corticosteroids, reduces production, release and activity of inflammatory chemicals, and suppresses immune system.

Side Effects

  • Common: increased appetite, indigestion, nervousness, insomnia, slow healing of wounds, increased susceptibility to infections
  • Less common: dizziness, headache, increased sweating, growth of facial hair, adrenal insufficiency
  • Serious: visual difficulties, increased thirst and urination, rectal bleeding, confusion, blistering skin, euphoria, depression

Note: Steroid medication can weaken your immune system, making it hard to fight off infection or illness. Tell your doctor about any infection or illness you have or have had before taking this medication.

Prednisolone Systemic

Brand Name(s): Delta-Cortef, Predalone 50, Predcor

Available over the counter: No

Relieves: Inflammation due to arthritis, allergic conditions, asthma, skin diseases, multiple sclerosis flare ups, other autoimmune disorders

Mechanism of action: Mimics effects of body's natural corticosteroids, reduces production, release and activity of inflammatory chemicals, and suppresses immune system

Side Effects

  • Common: Increased appetite, indigestion, nervousness, insomnia, slow healing of wounds, increased susceptibility to infections
  • Less common: Dizziness, headache, increased sweating, growth of facial hair, adrenal insufficiency
  • Serious: Visual difficulties, increased thirst and urination, rectal bleeding, confusion, blistering skin, euphoria, depression

Note: Steroid medication can weaken your immune system, making it hard to fight off infection or illness. Tell your doctor about any infection or illness you have or have had before taking this medication.

Prednisone

Brand Name(s): Deltasone, Orasone

Available Over-the-Counter: No

Relieves: Inflammation due to arthritis, allergic conditions, asthma, skin diseases, multiple sclerosis flare-ups, and other autoimmune disorders

Mechanism of action: Mimics effects of body's natural corticosteroids, reduces production, release and activity of inflammatory chemicals, and suppresses immune system.

Side Effects

  • Common: increased appetite, indigestion, nervousness, insomnia, slow healing of wounds
  • Less common: dizziness, headache, increased sweating, growth of facial hair, adrenal insufficiency
  • Serious: visual difficulties, increased thirst and urination, rectal bleeding, confusion, blistering skin, euphoria, depression

Note: Steroid medication can weaken your immune system, making it hard to fight off infection or illness. Tell your doctor about any infection or illness you have or have had before taking this medication.

Triamcinolone

Brand Name(s): Amcort, Kenalog-10, Trilone

Relieves: Inflammation due to arthritis, allergic conditions, asthma, skin diseases, multiple sclerosis flare-ups, and other autoimmune disorders

Available Over-the-Counter: No

Mechanism of action: Triamcinolone mimics effects of body's natural corticosteroids, reduces production, release and activity of inflammatory chemicals, and suppresses immune system.

Side Effects

  • Common: Increased appetite, indigestion, nervousness, insomnia, slow healing of wounds, increased susceptibility to infections
  • Less common: Dizziness, headache, increased sweating, growth of facial hair, adrenal insufficiency
  • Serious: Visual difficulties, increased thirst and urination, rectal bleeding, confusion, blistering skin, euphoria, depression

Note: Avoid immunization with live virus, as it lowers resistance to infection.

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For more information on Back Pain Medications for Pain Management or for a consultation at the Kraus Back and Neck Institute please call:

281.44.NEURO (281.446.3876)