So my GP thought prednisone would be a good idea for my reactive arthritis, saying - and thus convincing me - that "we don't want to let this get a foothold."
Reactive arthritis can become a chronic condition, so, yikes, sure, I'll try a steroid, thank you (prednisone is a steroid). It comes with a scary list of side effects, which can include things I really don't want right now, like susceptibility to infection (since I'm now off IV antibiotics, as of Monday, switchin' to oral), diarrhea (already a component of the clyndamycin), and SWELLING (which is what it's allegedly fighting)... plus there's also a list of things I don't want EVER, like steroidal moon-facedness, decreased vision, trouble thinking, and weight gain.
It also worked like hell, I must say: at 20 mg, it showed signs of rapidly reducing the swelling and soreness in my hands the first day I took it (also Monday, March 21st, at a dose of 20mg). It also manifested side effects almost right away: a jittery, fluttery, unsettled feeling in my chest cavity, kinda like you might get from caffeine anxiety, like my heartrate was goin' a bit funny on me. Maybe a bit of tightness in there, too, just a tiny bit of, um, pain. It was a bit disturbing - but not constant.
But hey, my hands were much better, so I tried it again yesterday. And again, marked decrease in swelling. Hands almost normal. A bit sore, typing this (tho' I've sent a couple emails this morning as well). Rapid return to being almost completely functional. Then my girlfriend pointed out that there were marked red bags under my eyes - big swollen puffy red bags.
And hey, my vision does feel a bit off.
So: fuck this, no more prednisone. I will phone a pharmacist or two about whether I have to taper off, since I've only been on it for two days, but I think I'm going to let my body heal itself for the duration of this illness. It was moving in that direction already, back before my doctor suggested anti-inflammatories and made it all worse. I appreciate his good intentions, but I do not wish to be a chessboard, nor do I wish any further experience of the side-effects of this particular drug.
Overall, I'm doing much better, however. We'll see what stopping prednisone does.