Prednisolone - when have you been advised to start it?

Evening all,

Just wondering when you've been given pred. or advised to start a prescription given in advance? Grr, doc focuses more on wheezing (I don't) and peakflow which doesn't always reflect how I feel.

My best peak flow (not that I've seen it recently) is 500 and I've recently been given some (40mg daily for 10 days) to keep for when needed. Think the doc said to start taking it at 200 but may have been 300?! Doesn't help haven't got an action plan including this but seeing asthma nurse again next week and not leaving without something in writing.

13 Replies

  • Hi Tj,im on pred at the moment and been 65 days and 2 weeks to go and then hope stay off it but always drop again. My hospital asthma nurse tells me ring her when having probs and then fax's my doc for steroids. Usually my pf is 250-300 when have problems and i have to take 10-12 puffs of my reliever every 3-4 hours first and then if struggling the pred starts and have to keep some in stock. Also if got a cold or chest infection and pain i have to see my doctor

  • Hi TJ,

    I have pred on repeat so I can start it when I need to and have been told to start it when I am not fully responding to 3/4 hourly 10 puffs or nebs and to start at 40mg (althought looks like this is now going to be 60mg) for 5 days and books in ASAP to get a reduction plan in place. I too find it really frustrating that no-one will actually commit to writing this down for me and just tell me all the different things to try and do. Best of luck Nic

  • I've got pred and antibiotics, but have no idea what circumstances should tag me to take them. I can't stand the stuff anyhow so I suspect I'll hold onto them. I'm seeing them as an emergency supply to use if things get bad and I can't get to see anyone at my GPs.

  • Hi TJ,

    yes, I also have preds and antibiotics for emergencies at home but like you I'm rather reluctant to take them. I just spoke to my asthma nurse about when to start preds yesterday and she said when shortness of breath is bad, feeling of tight chest and low air entry in lungs. Well, I'm pretty used to coping with these things as too used to feeling like that so I usually leave it too late anyway.

    I'd just go and get checked over when you get to a point where you feel bad.

    And yes, pf's are unreliable in my case and I hardly ever wheeze. Why do even health professionals still make such a big deal with that wheeze????

    It's so frustrating and there's still so much to do about it!

    Hope you'll get some answers soon.

    Love Lydia x

  • I totally agree that I would rather not start pred at all but i end up being put on it anyway so atleast this makes you feel minutely in control - lol!! The point of having it on repeat for me is that when I am struggling to get on top of things even using my nebuliser I can start the pred because it is always the same answer that is necessary - hit it hard at 40mg a day - even if it is a weekend, BH or evening and not have too go out of hours just to get pred. This means I have started by the time I get to the asthma nurse or doctor which I always do within a couple of days. I guess it depends how comfortable you are with knowing where you are and when and how long you have been dependent on pred for- I have been dependent on pred for 14 years now so kind of just think the sooner I start it the sooner I can wean off, sometimes the longer I struggle the longer I need the higher doses.

    Good luck

  • hi tj- my best pf after lots of inhalers or nebs is 350, normally up to 300 on a good day-was told to self medicate with steroids at 250 and go to hospital if it drops to 200. to be honest if i were to take them at 250 id never be off them and as it happens ive only just ended a course that was started about a month ago after a horrible few weeks in and out of hospital. i hate taking tablets and the steroids that arent coated (white rather than red) are disgusting to take and leave a horrible taste in my mouth for ages. i would ask for an asthma action plan it makes things much easier.

  • Prednisolone


    I have been having trouble with my asthma, peak flows very up and down. I had a bad winter with chest infections a lot of the time needed quite a few courses stronge antibiotics and prednisolone.

    My asthma is still up and down so I have had quite a few trips to the doctors and medication has been charged so I am on seretide 250 for the Foreseeable futher along with all my other medications.

    I keep getting and tight chest so I have to use my blue inhaler quite a lot.

    The doctor has told me to keep a course of Prednisolone 5mg Tablets at home and to start them if my peak flow is 300 or below. So I always keep a course at home for when I need them.


  • Thanks everyone,

    Looking forward to getting it cleared up @ appt Tues. Not been on pred regularly-white ones are horrible. Never had nebulisers yet or touch wood been to hospital.

    Sparkyrachel, sounds like you've similar meds to me. Also been bad this winter after hardly needing any ventolin in 2010. Had a couple bouts of colds/flu in Dec/Jan with possible chest infection. Had antibiotics for sinusitis most of the time since and waiting ENT appt now.

  • Prednisolone

    Good Evening,

    I have had Several courses of prednisolone when my peak flow drops below 300. It improves my peak flows for a couple of weeks before it drops back down. My peak flow is like a mountain very up and down. I am having to use a lot of my blue inhaler at the moment, I seem to have a tight chest a lot of the time. I am not sleeping to good at the moment as I seem to be having problems with asthma and a night time cough.

    I was wondering if any has experienced feeling sick when they has finished a course of Prednisolone?

    Thank you for reading this message.


  • Seen the asthma nurse today. I have got things clarified. The prednisolone held in case was for peak flow below 200 (me thinks that would be emergency appt or A&E time) or if seretide 250mg one twice a day doubled to 2 puffs twice daily i.e. max dose doesn't help this week.

    Sparkyrachel, pred helped for a few days then had a bad night sleep/few good days/bad night sleep... But this does seem to be complicated by sinusitis affecting lungs with mucus aka one airway disease. Never felt sick myself but I think may be glynis has a post on steroid reduction in the last few days. Peak flow often ~300 in the morning, max 400 evenings. Also seem to have tight chest a lot, cough particularly in the morning & day-sound like smoker, fine tremors/shakes due to a lot of ventolin-can't hold a full mug of coffee sometimes or draw straight lines...

    Have had ENT choose and book appt for sinusitis but it is in July then they'll do ?CT scan and then book in for operation in Sept/Oct..? Have asked about NHS/private treatment centre referral not too far away so should hear soon about that.

  • Rachel- I was wondering whether the feeling sick was indigestion? I definitely get this on oral steroids particularly on longer courses. Have you tried indigestion remedies (be careful though as some can't be taken at the same time as other medicines)?


  • I have Pred at home to increase (I'm on maintenence Pred anyway) if my peak flow falls below 400. This is quite high, but I tend to get into trouble very quickly when my peak flows below 400 so better to sap it hard and quick rather than wait and see with the inevitable holiday to Costa. They've just decided that I should have anti-biotics to start as well because these seem to really help.

    I still get the red Preds. Had to bully my GP into prescribing them but I get them everytime now - so much better for my stomach and avoiding the horrible taste so they don't make me feel sick.

  • I have been told once peak flow is 50% or below normal then start prednisalone an if no improvement with in 2-3 days doctors or hospital if after hours or weekend. I have preds in the house for when this happens so I don't have to deal with waiting for a prescription as by the time tht is ready 2 days after puttin it in it is too late and they don't work

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