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prenisolone and asthma attacks

This question has been sticking in my mind this week. If you are on prenisolone to recover from an asthma attack and this to reduce the inflammation to get your asthma control then.... Is it possible to have an another asthma attack while on the rescue steroids? If so why.

15 Replies

Yes you can have an attack while on prednisolone. It takes time to reduce the inflammation from an attack! Sometimes they don't bring it down quick enough or sometimes they don't reduce the inflammation enough even tho you have finished them.

Hope this helps.


Ok so it is possible I am on day 6 of my steroids today and I think I had another asthma attack yesterday. One my peak flow is starting to drop again yesterday (day 5) when I woke up was 350 that's 77.7% of my best peak flow 450. My lungs are started to ache yesterday and now are starting to hurt again. Peak flow 350 again this morning. Peak flow up again after 4 puffs of Ventolin to 400 (30 mins later) Yesterday too I had to have more Ventolin than every four hours (4 puffs) in the afternoon.

I have taken my prednisolone this morning 7 am (40mg). Going to take more Ventolin when necessary.

I was going back to doctors tomorrow but now made an online appointment with doctors today at 12 pm. So it looks like I will be on steroids longer this time.


You've done the right thing booking an appointment to be seen again!! X


Thank you just feeling fed up. I am very blessed to have the NHS and my fantastic GP surgery. Will post later after appointment.


Hi all saw one of the GPs and we discussed my symptoms and he checked my oxygen levels. My heart was racing a bit (1.5 hrs after 4 puffs ventolin) and my chest was clear. ( chest is usually clear). Only heard wheezing once after being check over by doctors day after my first asthma attack) We discuss my peak flow which I show my diary of my peak flow reading from the last two days and the low reading of the last two morning. 350/450. 77.7%. The things I thought might have trigger my asthma attacks in the Last two. Cold air firstly, dog hair (visiting in laws with two golden retrievers) and getting a cold. Lastly ppossibly of one of them being a panic attack that was discounted as I had already had that discussion previously with one of nurse practitioners. I have had a panic attack yearsand years ago so kknow the feeling not to be forgotten.

Upshot of all this was doctors told me to stop the steroids as he wasn't happy me being on two lots of steroids in 2/3 wks. 40 mg day 6 today.

Sent me for a chest X ray today done and a blood test within the week.Ln Wednesday and back to see asthma nurse Friday as per arranged and add Sadding an anti histamine to my meds. After all that I went away and though about decided to ring asthma UK helpline.

The long and short of the call was the asthma nurse according to the guidelines and her advice it's back to the doctors for me and getting another appointment tomorrow. Feeling greatly supported to go back to doctors. Also was advised that I need to be referred to asthma consultant as I am been so bad the Las the 2/3 wks and I on 250 seretide. Also suggested that I try different inhaler fostair as a faster working acting inhaler and cheaper for the nhs. Possible more steroids starting tomorrow

even if I start taking more by lunchtime would be fine. Phew will add tomorrow.


I have had Fostair Nexthaler for 3 weeks as I have had a flare up but it is giving me the shakes so I am going to ask to change it. But we are all different so we need to find what suits us.


OK didn't get a good nights sleep last night. Woke up at 4 am (that's the time the asthma UK nurse wanted my peak flow measure if I could) why not sure but hubbie was snoring for over an hour. Got up and did my peak flow 380 and that was 5 hours after 4 puffs of Ventolin just before I went to sleep at 11 am. I laid down to go to sleep and started coughing so I thought I have some Ventolin to see if would help it did.

Peak flow when I had to get up 6:30 am was 390 and my chest is an bit achy.

Really Really tired now and now questioning whether I get another appointment today or wait. I don't like taking steroids and part of me just want to stop now. Two lots of steroids in 3 wks I put on weight (I know it can be avoided) at least 4 pounds, sleep disturbance and sends my blood sugar very high (I am not diabetic!).So you can see why I want to stop now and just wait to see my asthma nurse on Friday.

However as I good at talking myself out of things I going to do the sensible thing and make an appointment. It will be the open surgery but if I walk around there (5 mins) then I will get one.

Will catch up later with any news


I've been on Pred for 18yrs now, my dosage goes up & down, I'm currently on just 14mg which is a very low dose for me, as I can go up to 60mg when I'm ill. Your body gets almost hooked on Pred after a long period as your body stops making steroid naturally. If when you're on Pred you are still having attacks then your dose possibly isn't enough or your other meds aren't right. Hope your winter is calm and healthy

1 like

I'm same been on them continually since 1992, maintenance dose 20mg. Last hospital consultant stopped Flixotide and gave me Fostair and Clenil, feel sick and haven't been able to reduce as they told me to - was on 30mg at time as had infection and had been titrating down from 40mg, they said to reduce 5mg every 3 days till I was down to 10mg - yeah right. Have tried and tried, lowest I got was 18mg and that was by reducing 1mg a time after I got down to 25mg. Shall keep trying even putting up with sickly feeling. Not sure how much cortisol body needs but know mine won't start making it again after all this time (that's what I've been told anyway - anyone know different)


Interesting Iv been having problems over past year and on off steroids being only tab to control asthma with still the intermittent cough and breathlessness back up to 40mh and not able to get down past 25 without getting really bad.

Awaiting referral appt for The Royal Brompton. In hope someone can shed some light and help.


I have adrenal suppression following long term steroid use.

The Brompton tested me when I managed to reduce my pred to 7mg per day following good results with xolair.

The blood test showed low cortisone and was told that the test would be repeated when I reduced to 5mg per day. The second test showed the same result so was referred to an endocrinologist who performed a short Synacthen test which confirmed by adrenals were shot.

I now take hydrocortisone 3 times a day 15mg 7.5mg and 10mg and have an emergency injection kit.

This is a serious life threatening condition but as long as you are sensible and follow advice you will be ok.

You should wear some kind of medi alert too as if you have an accident or go into adrenal crisis the medics need to know that you are steroid dependent and need hydrocortisone

You need to increase hydrocortisone if you are ill or have any medical procedures - even dentistry - I have just had a knee replacement and had iv hydrocortisone 100mg every 6 hours for 48 hours then double oral dose for another 48 hours and I was fine.

Addisons org online is the charity where to get advice.

Endocrinologist performed a whole host of tests which revealed that my thyroid and testosterone were also affected so I have medication for these too.



I have medi alert necklace. Was worried about rapid reduction the hospital doctor wanted me to do, if I reduce too quickly asthma symptoms get worse. Lowest I've been on in last 20 years is 18mg and couldn't cope


I have made an appointment for open surgery this morning at 11:15 am. I'm going to give asthma UK helpline another ring. Need just a little more reassurance that I'm not going today unnecessary.


Hi all my initial question has started alot of talk about prenisolone and its effects of people health with asthma.

Well back to me. I rang asthma UK this morning and decided that in the balance of things I didn't need to go. So I cancelled my appointment.

Now I need to on the advise of the amazing asthma nurse to be kind to myself and let myself recover slowly this week.

The advise I was given watch my peak flow (to make sure it still going up), make sure that if I get worse ie. my symptoms start getting worse then go and be seen before Friday (my asthma appointment with my nurse).

And finally in the event of an asthma attack follow plan and do what is necessary and in the extreme ring 999.

I need some rest in the next couple of days and do the stuff only necessary. I have a busy day tomorrow and can't avoid being out about all morning. Thursday is looking quite. Housework needs to be done and I hoping to start getting back on top of it.

Two asthma attack in three weeks have really brought me down physically and I now recognize this and need to be kind. I hope and pray that in a week or so I will be back to normal. I am sure that after my asthma review on Friday I will be even more reassure that I am now due to my fab asthma nurse and GP surgery.

I think the watch word here is be kind to yourself and let yourself convalescence.


I tagging this to my original post as I didn't want to start another post and explain myself all over again. Anyway up short I got a phone call today from the GP I saw on Monday He said that my lung X ray is clear. My iron count is within the normal range 35 lowest it should be is 30. The doctor has recommended that I go on Iron tablets to boost my iron. This I agreed to so he written a prescription for this. He thinks that his will help with my asthma aka my breathing.

So that's another thing to add to my medication for a while. I have a prepayment card for my medication as I had lots of different inhalers last year after my first asthma attack I thought it would be wise to do this. This proved to be a really good idea as I just recycled 6 different kinds of inhalers that I was given to try to get my asthma under control. Also as I have one inhaler every month at the moment and one a month for monkelaust + anther prescription that I have monthly for my other long term health condition then I think I am quids in. I pay £10:60 a month so as you can see even with just having two prescriptions it makes financial sense. Then adding the iron tablets I not worrying about whether I can afford it. Affordability that's another post all together.


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