How long is it safe to take 5mg daily of prednisone? What drugs can be used in trying to get off prednisone?
This is a tough question. There is increasing evidence on the negative effects of low dose prednisone. But I do not think this is a black and white issue. Low dose prednisone can cause weight gain, increased blood pressure, worsening diabetes, osteoporosis and increase risk of heart disease. Thus, if you have one of these problems already or have other risk factors for these problems, then prednisone could make matters worse. However, many patients require prednisone in the range of 5 mg daily or less and do very well. In these patients, adding medications such as methotrexate or azathioprine to allow prednisione to be discontinued may not be worth it.