What is Methylprednisolone?
Methylprednisolone is a medication used to treat certain allergies, skin conditions, and arthritis. It can also be used to suppress the immune system.
Who is it for?
Methylprednisolone is for dogs, cats, and horses.
What are the benefits?
||Methylprednisolone is a powerful anti-inflammatory medication in oral form
||Used to treat diseases associated with inflammation including certain allergies, skin conditions, and types of arthritis
||Can also be used to suppress the immune system
||It is quick-acting and has a longer period of activity than prednisone or prednisolone
Methylprednisolone is a synthetic corticosteroid used in the treatment of many different conditions, including autoimmune diseases such as lupus and some hemolytic anemias. It is also used to treat asthma and certain skin diseases in cats.
How does Methylprednisolone work?
Methylprednisolone has an effect on virtually every organ system in the body. Methylprednisolone is a corticosteroid that blocks the production of substances that trigger allergic and inflammatory actions. Methylprednisolone is used to modify the body's immune response. At lower doses it helps to reduce inflammation by decreasing the activity of certain cells and chemicals produced by the body that cause inflammation. At higher doses, it can suppress the immune system by decreasing the number of cells necessary for a proper immune response.
Is there a generic equivalent available?
Methylprednisolone is the common drug name and there are multiple generic equivalents available.
How is it given?
Methylprednisolone is an oral tablet, given by mouth. It may be given with food to avoid stomach upset. Always follow the dosage instructions provided by your veterinarian. If you have difficulties giving the medication, contact your veterinarian. Dosage depends on the product used. Your veterinarian may recommend starting at a higher dose and then reducing the dose every few days to a week. If on long-term therapy, do not discontinue the drug abruptly. The dose needs to be tapered off over several days to weeks to allow the body to start making its own cortisol again. This medication should only be given to the pet for which it was prescribed.
What results can I expect?
When used to treat inflammatory conditions, such as certain skin diseases, the success rate is usually good and improvements can be seen in several days. If the methylprednisolone is stopped, signs of the disease may reappear. Autoimmune diseases are more difficult to treat and the success rate will depend on the type and severity of the condition.
What form(s) does it come in?
Methylprednisolone comes in an oral tablet form.
There are no veterinary brand names for methylprednisolone tablets. Medrol is the brand name human form of the drug.
Common Drug Name
What should I discuss with my veterinarian while considering Methylprednisolone?
Ask your veterinarian what dose will provide the most benefit while minimizing any side effects. Also discuss how long the treatment period will be and what type of outcome is expected. You and your veterinarian should talk about any other treatment options that are recommended for your pet.
Tell your veterinarian if your pet has diabetes; stomach ulcers; Cushings disease; a bacterial, viral or fungal infection; heart, liver or kidney disease; may be pregnant; or is nursing.
Notify your veterinarian of any other medications or supplements your dog is taking, and also if your dog has had any reactions to previous medications.
What should I do if I miss a dose?
Contact your veterinarian to determine when to give the next dose.
What is the most important information I should know?
You will need to work closely with your veterinarian to determine the proper dose. If used long-term, this medication should not be stopped abruptly. The dose needs to be tapered over a course of time as determined by your veterinarian.
Who should not take it?
Not for use in animals with systemic fungal infections, some types of mange (mites), stomach ulcers, Cushing's disease, high blood pressure, kidney disease, or congestive heart failure. Do not use in pregnant animals. It may cause premature birth and birth defects in some animals. Methylprednisolone
may stunt growth if used in young, growing animals or is given to nursing mothers.
What side effects may be seen when taking Methylprednisolone?
Side effects are usually dose dependent. If side effects occur, contact your veterinarian, who may decrease the dosage, frequency, or type of corticosteroid.
The most common side effects are increased appetite, drinking, and urination. Your pet may have more "accidents" and need to go outside or use the litter box more often. Less common side effects include weight gain, panting, diarrhea, vomiting, and behavior changes.
Side effects of daily long-term use include muscle loss, weakness, and the development of diabetes or hyperadrenocorticism (Cushing's disease). The typical signs of these diseases are increased thirst, urination, and appetite. Animals with Cushing's disease may also develop thin skin, a poor hair coat, and a "pot-belly." Side effects may also include activation or worsening of hypothyroidism or pancreatitis.
Immune system suppression may occur at high doses, making a pet more susceptible to infection. Contact your veterinarian if your pet has a fever (over 103° F), painful urination (a sign of urinary tract infection), tiredness, sneezing, coughing, or runny eyes.
How is it stored?
Store at room temperature, in tight, light resistant, childproof container. Do not freeze.
What should I do if I know of or suspect there has been an overdose?
Chronic, or long-term, overdose is likely to cause signs of Cushing's disease or diabetes mellitus; both diseases commonly cause increased urinating, drinking, and eating. Abruptly stopping long-term treatment may cause signs of Addison's disease, including vomiting, weakness, collapse and sudden death. If you know or suspect your pet has had an overdose, or if you observe any of these signs in your pet, contact your veterinarian immediately.
What should I avoid when giving my pet Methylprednisolone?
Consult your veterinarian before using methylprednisolone with vitamins and supplements or non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as aspirin, carprofen (Novox or Rimadyl), deracoxib (Deramaxx), etodolac (EtoGesic), meloxicam (Metacam),firocoxib (Previcox), or tepoxalin (Zubrin). Discuss the use of Methylprednisolone with your veterinarian if it will be used along with insulin, modified live vaccines, phenytoin, phenobarbital, rifampin, cyclosporine, estrogens, erythromycin, or mitotane, amphotericin B, furosemide, or thiazide, since interactions may occur.
Methylprednisolone may cause abnormal levels of hepatic enzymes, thyroid hormone, cholesterol, and potassium in the blood, and can affect many laboratory tests. Make sure your veterinarian knows your pet is taking methylprednisolone prior to any testing.
Where is more information available?
Ask your veterinarian, consult with one of our pharmacists at 1-800-447-3021, or see the Patient Information Sheet on this medication.