Having nephrotic syndrome. Biopsy confirmed Minimal Change Disease, taking Wysolon. Side effect?
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Minimal change disease is a common cause of nephrotic syndrome and prednisolone or wysolone is the first line drug used to treat it. Wysolone comes under a class of drugs known as steroids.
It is given at a dose of 1mg/kg for 4-8 weeks. After this period depending on the patient's response the dose is gradually decreased.
Some of the common side effects of wysolone are as follows:
1) It can cause gastritis: so we often prescribe pantoprazole to prevent this
2) It can cause cosmetic changes like swelling of the face, stretch marks and acne.
3) Wysolone can increase the blood sugar levels and blood pressure. So we need to check the patient's blood pressure and blood sugar levels a couple of weeks after starting the pill.
4) It can cause weakening of bones; so we prescribe calcium and vitamin D supplements with it.
In some patients it can cause mood swings and increased appetite.
Apart from this the long term use of steroids (>6 months) in high doses can cause muscle weakness, sometimes eye problems (like cataract/glaucoma) and increased risk of infections.
This is not a complete list; I have mentioned the common problems which we see.
It is easy to get intimidated by the long list of side effects. However most of these are mild or easy to treat and the benefits with steroid therapy are well established in treating minimal change disease.
In the rare patient of minimal change disease who are unable to tolerate steroids (<5%) for any reason we can use other non steroidal drugs.
I hope this was helpful.
I will be happy to answer any more questions which you may have.
Dr. Aditya Bhabhe
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