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Suggest treatment for knee pain and osteonecrosis

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Posted on Mon, 25 May 2015
Question: Hi. I am a 57 year old female and am taking Methylprednisolone (4mg dosepak for 6 days). Midway through day three, I started to notice knee pain. I have read online that taking this medication can lead to serious bone loss (osteonecrosis) if taken in high enough doses for a long time. Can you please tell me whether a 4mg dosepak for 6 days can cause this particular complication & if you think that the methylprednisolone is causing my knee pain? I am very upset & concerned that I have done permanent damage to my knees. Thanking you in advance for your response. XXXXXXX
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Answered by Dr. Heera Lal Poonia (37 minutes later)
Brief Answer:
it is not due to methylprednisolone

Detailed Answer:
Dear XXXX, welcome to HCM and thanks for choosing us.

I share your concerns about possible side effects of steroid medications. But in my opinion knee pain which you have is not due to methylprednisolone because of the following reasons
1 4 mg is very small dosage. Methylprednisolone can be taken upto 120 mg for limited duration.
2 6 days is very short period for side effects to appear.
3 methylprednisolone is in fact given to treat joint pain.


So stop worrying about side effects and continue medicine strictly as per your doctor's advise. Don't discontinue without consulting your doctor. You can visit your doctor or orthopaedic specialist for knee pain.

I hope my reply will benefit you. Please write to us for follow up queries. I wish you good health. Thanks
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Shanthi.E
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Follow up: Dr. Heera Lal Poonia (10 hours later)
So do you don't think that I will end up with osteonecrosis from taking this medication? The medication was prescribed by my orthopedic surgeon to reduce swelling. When I began the dosepak, however, my internist told me how dangerous it can be and that I may develop permanent bone loss and that I should not take it. I started the meds anyway and have developed knee pain. I am afraid. Thank you.
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Answered by Dr. Heera Lal Poonia (8 hours later)
Brief Answer:
short duration course in low dosages will be safe

Detailed Answer:
Welcome again. I share your concerns about side effects of steroids. But your doctor is also equally concerned about your health. Steroids, if taken for very long period and in high dosages can cause osteoporosis and several other adverse health impacts. But Short duration course of steroids will not cause any problem.

Morever dosages you are taking are also small, so don't worry and take medicine as per your doctor's advise. However if treatment gets prolonged for months, you can discuss with your doctor about side effects, but in my opinion you will not require these medicines for long.

I hope my reply will help you. Please write to us for more questions. Kindly rate this reply. I wish you good health. Thanks
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Yogesh D
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Answered by
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Dr. Heera Lal Poonia

General & Family Physician

Practicing since :2008

Answered : 506 Questions

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Suggest treatment for knee pain and osteonecrosis

Brief Answer: it is not due to methylprednisolone Detailed Answer: Dear XXXX, welcome to HCM and thanks for choosing us. I share your concerns about possible side effects of steroid medications. But in my opinion knee pain which you have is not due to methylprednisolone because of the following reasons 1 4 mg is very small dosage. Methylprednisolone can be taken upto 120 mg for limited duration. 2 6 days is very short period for side effects to appear. 3 methylprednisolone is in fact given to treat joint pain. So stop worrying about side effects and continue medicine strictly as per your doctor's advise. Don't discontinue without consulting your doctor. You can visit your doctor or orthopaedic specialist for knee pain. I hope my reply will benefit you. Please write to us for follow up queries. I wish you good health. Thanks