Hi all,

I took Prednisone for an autoimmune condition a little over a year ago. I had to be on pretty high doses of the stuff for six weeks, then tapered down. My doctor prescribed me Prilosec with it, which I took daily until the last week or two of treatment when I was tapering off of it and on what I considered very small doses (5 mg then 2.5 mg instead of the 80 I was started on). I forgot to renew the Prilosec prescription and figured that it probably wasn't necessary for the last two weeks.

I'm regretting that decision now! I started feeling heartburn for the first time ever in my life at that time. It wasn't too bad, just a "minor" annoyance (especially when compared to all of the other side effects that I was suffering from) which I was happy to stick out for a week!

My doctors assured me that the heartburn should go away once I stopped the Prednisone, but it never did. I've continued to have it off and on ever since, and it has been 13 months. My doctor didn't seem all that concerned when I brought it up in September, but on my followup visit 2 months later I'd dropped 12 pounds unintentionally because of a drastic decrease in appetite. She blamed the heartburn for this and gave me pantoprazole.

She never mentioned "GERD" or "Acid Reflux" to me, but when I started reading up on this I'm starting to think that those last few weeks on Prednisone might have caused some serious damage to my esophagus or something, and that I might have this now. Does anyone else feel that they have GERD/Acid Reflux/Heartburn because of Prednisone?

Thanks,

-C.
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First Helper healyourself
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replied January 6th, 2010
Prednisone causing Acid Reflux?
I was put on Prednisone for bronchitis, and after a few days developed SEVERE pain in my chest which necessitated a trip to the E.R. Turned out to be Acid Reflux, which I had NEVER had before. Stopped the Prednisone and started Prilosec. Hopefully things will improve; it's too early for me to tell yet, but based on your account I'm hoping it didn't cause more long term damage (although I wasn't on it for long...only 5 days).
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replied August 4th, 2012
heartburn from prednisone, starting prilosec
i took prednisone for 7 days similar to you and stopped because it wasnt helping my constant headache. 2 days after stopping the prednisone i got painful heartburn and i am
still getting it and it has been over a week. i started prilosec yesterday, like you. has it helped at all? are you back to normal? should i take something stronger? please help!
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replied August 2nd, 2010
Prednisone/Severe acid reflux
I developed severe acid reflux after two short courses of prednisone. I did not have a history of acid refux. The acid reflux is so severe that I have developed Barrett's esophagus. I currently take nexium twice a day and that doesn't control the acid at all. I just started domperidone and am seeing a naturopath and an osteopath. I can't eat and I can't sleep and this has been going on for five months. Does it ever get any better?
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replied September 17th, 2010
gerd
Chia seed is supposed to soak up acid the same as it soaks up water.
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replied September 17th, 2010
My wife had lung cancer. It was one that is not treatable by any chemo drugs that are out there. The Encologist Did not tell us this but put her on chemo anyway. 12 weeks later after loosing hair, nails, soles of her feet, mouth sores, outside. There was also the damage this does to the intestinal tract and bone marrow and immune system without touching the cancer. After this we stopped chemo and started on a different approach. The chemo had however ruined her food tube, causing acid reflux to start. This became so painful she couldn't swallow. In stead of giving her something for the acid her primary Dr gave her prednisone for the swelling. This drugs side affects are the same as what she was already experiencing, so it got much worse. She had to start sleeping sitting up, but that didn't help. Then her cancer Dr gave her another prescription for prednisone for the swelling. He finally gave her prilosec but it was too late. The stomach acid had done too much damage to her lungs. She died Aug 19 2010 drowning in the acid and mucus filling her lungs.
I miss her. Don't these Dr's know the side affects of the drugs they are prescribing?
I didn't know about the chia seed until she was gone, wish I had.
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replied June 2nd, 2015
I am sad to hear of your loss of your wife.
I am on Prednisone for paricarditis (most severe attack ever seen) and have been since February. A short low dosage in December did not take care of the pain and inflammation. Now I am months into it plus warfarin and have had a headache for 10 days and last night could not sleep -- every time I would relax and ready to slip into sleep, I would 'throw up' a small amount of very acidic fluid. This went on all night. I am certain it is from one or more of the drugs. I am on the stomach pill but something has changed. Currently at 5mg for 30 days. moving to 2.5 etc. Started with IV of mass amounts, then 40 mg for 10 days and then tapering. Had a flare up at 2.5 every other day and put back on 7.5 for a month. I take a probiotic, aloe, and immune support. I hoped I was protecting myself fro all the side effects. I cannot quit yet as I cannot go back to the severe inflammation. What is the CHIA advise? THANK YOU
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replied July 5th, 2015
Extremely eHealthy
So sorry to hear about your wife. She is now out of pain.
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replied September 17th, 2010
So sorry to hear what your wife went through. I think that a lot of doctors don't know of the side effects of drugs. Often the drugs are worse than the original condition. Thanks for the info about chia seed. I will definitely find out more about it.
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replied September 25th, 2010
Prednisone can wipe out your gut lining which is approximately 80% of the body's immune system. Not a very good place to be in. Althought this product is marketed for gluten intolerance, NuMedica Gluten Intolerance dose packs can help you regrow the gut lining and keep inflammation down, along with omega 3,6 and 9 fish oil, vitamin D3 (immune function), NADH to regrow healthy cells (may want to be careful, as this will raise blood pressure a little) and a good probiotic to reintroduce good bacteria back into the gut. In the meantime, 1 part apple cider vinegar to 4 parts water and then sip - will help the acid reflux alot. If allowed to go on too long without an immune system barrier, your adreal, thyroid and pancreas can be affected and you can become susceptible to bacterial and fungal infections, which are very hard to get rid of. In addition, a healthy barrier absorbs vitamins and minerals and filters out toxins and bacteria from reaching your bloodstream and other organs. Without the barrier, large chunks of food can get past the gut into the body, which can then cause food and skin allergies and autoimmune disorders. You are defenseless.
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replied September 30th, 2010
Damaged LES
How would you heal a damaged lower esohageal spincter?
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replied September 30th, 2010
I would highly suggest finding a good certified clinical nutritionist who can help you get your esophageal sphincter healed without pharmaceuticals. There are a wealth of supplements and good common sense eating habits that will help get you on the road to recovery. Ask friends and colleagues for references to a good one.
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replied November 26th, 2014
Yes i too am experiencing same as everyone else in the comments.
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replied November 27th, 2014
Experienced User
Prednisone can cause increased acid production - so any reflux may cause severe irritation to the esophagus. That's why prilosec (or alternative PPI such as pantoprazole) will have been prescribed at the same time.

However if acid reflux persists, continuation of PPIs (at lowest effective dose) for a few weeks may be necessary.

If symptoms continue, discuss with your doctor who may send you for an Esophago-Gastro-Duodenoscopy (EGD) scope to ensure no permanent damage (Barrett's Esophagus - a possible pre-cursor to esophageal cancer) has occured.
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replied November 4th, 2015
Steroids cause debilitating side effects to my esaphogus. Presently taking prednisone for a lasting migraine (did not know that is what I was going to be prescribed) and have already had to take the "cocktail" meds to keep the pain down. It actually relaxes the esophagus. Esophageal spasms is what is happening and steroids is one of the things that aggravate it. Eating too much at one sitting also causes a flare up. I love to eat, but remain thin-just the way I was made. In the morn, I most often weigh in at about 122- now it's at about 114 to 115. Afraid to eat, because of the pain it can cause. I cannot remember the official name to the diagnosis, but basically I have a lazy esophagus and a lazy stomach-gastric emptying is slow. It took me quite some time to get any kind of diagnosis. The doctors wanted try this or that (and I understand that, but sometimes it seems they aren't really listening), but I was telling them for months how much it hurt. Even went to the hospital several times thinking I was having a heart attack. Hearts fine, by the way-I was sent to a cardiologist.
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replied September 3rd, 2016
Predisone caused my acid reflux
After reading these posts, I feel better knowing other people have experienced the same effects after taking prednisone. I have had to take it on and off several times over the years for bronchitis. However, several years ago after taking it for a 10 days, I remember the first attack of acid reflux about 2 weeks later after finishing the prescription and always thought the use of prednisone caused the GERD. These doctors hand these prescriptions out with no thought to the possible long term, life changing side effects. My ex-husband before he died was released from the hospital with 11 prescriptions. It was almost comical if it hadn't been so devastating to read he was given a pill for one ailment only to have side effects that required another pill supposed to fix those side effects that in itself caused more side effects requiring more medications. I'm miserable with this GERD. My gastro doctor wants to put me on something like Nexium but these drugs are highly controversial with serious side effects. Also, I am high risk for osteoporosis and one of the side effects of Nexium and other like drugs is bone loss. So I treat one problem and end up with more and worse problems. Going to try the natural remedies first.
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