Prednisone and High Blood Pressure

Question

I am on Prednisone for my RA and will be off of it in two weeks. Today my doctor said that my blood pressure is high(160/100) This is frist time since I start taking Prednisone about 6 months. My BP has always been normal. Once I stop taking Prednisone will my BP go back to normal and how long will it take to go back to normal?

Answer

Your blood pressure should be better off of prednisone, but still may be high. You may have a tendency to have high blood pressure that was merely brought out by the prednisone. Prednisone can increase blood pressure by causing the retention of salt and water. But weight gain caused by prednisone may also increase your blood pressure. If your blood pressure increase was caused by salt and water retention, then I would expect your blood pressure to improve over the next few weeks.

Alan Matsumoto, M.D.

About Alan Matsumoto, M.D.

Part-time Faculty, Division of Rheumatology
Johns Hopkins University