What is it for and how to use it

Methylprednisolone is an anti-inflammatory, specifically a corticosteroid, which works to reduce the production of substances that cause inflammation or allergies.

For this reason, this medicine is used to treat problems such as severe asthma, severe allergic reactions, arthritis, and autoimmune diseases. Methylprednisolone can be found in various presentations such as tablets, syrups, creams, and injections.

This drug can be purchased in conventional pharmacies upon presentation of a medical prescription, and can be found under various trade names, such as Solu-Medrol, Depomedrol, Solsolona, ​​Medrol, Precort, Laxona, for example, or its generics. With the name “Methylprednisolone”. See what corticosteroids are and what their side effects are.

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what is this for

Methylprednisolone is used for:

  • severe asthma attacks;
  • severe allergic reactions;
  • Prevention of anaphylactic shock caused by bee sting or consumption of any food causing allergy. See What is Anaphylactic Shock;
  • rheumatic diseases, such as gouty arthritis, ankylosing spondylitis, or rheumatoid arthritis;
  • Autoimmune diseases, such as systemic lupus erythematosus, Crohn’s disease, and ulcerative colitis;
  • Addison’s disease;
  • advanced chronic obstructive pulmonary disease;
  • skin diseases, such as urticaria, severe eczema, dermatomyositis, and pemphigus;
  • polymyositis;
  • Swelling in the brain due to fluid accumulation (cerebral edema) and spinal cord injury.

In addition, it can also be used in combination with other drugs in immunosuppressive therapy and cancer treatment after organ transplantation.

How to use methylprednisolone?

The dosage and method of use of methylprednisolone will depend on the indicated presentation, as can be seen below:

1. Tablets or syrup

The doctor or pediatrician usually indicates an initial dose and later prescribes a maintenance dose, which should be adapted to the condition being treated.

  • Initial dosage in adults: 12 to 80 mg daily;
  • Initial dosage in children: 0.8 to 1.5 mg daily for each kg of body weight, but never more than 80 mg in children.
  • Usual maintenance dosage in adults: 4 to 8 mg per day in adults, however, up to 16 mg per day can be taken in short treatments.
  • Usual maintenance dosage in children: 2 to 4 mg per day in children.

2. Cream 1mg/g

Methylprednisolone should be applied in a thin layer to the affected area once a day.

Treatment should not be continued for more than 12 weeks. If the cream is used to treat a rash on the face accompanied by inflammation and peeling, the affected areas should not be treated for more than 1 week.

3. Injectable solution 20, 40 or 500 mg/mL

Methylprednisolone injection solutions of 20, 40 or 500 mg/mL can be administered intramuscularly or intravenously, and should be administered as indicated by a doctor or pediatrician. Like the tablets, it is usually started with a usual dose of 20 to 40 mg per day in adults and 8 to 16 mg per day in children, which may vary depending on the condition being treated.

In severe cases, in which the expected effect is not achieved within half an hour, the injection may be repeated up to a maximum dose of 80 mg. The interval between two injections will range from 30 minutes to 24 hours, depending on the severity of the individual.

Side effects

Some side effects of methylprednisolone are weight gain, increased blood sugar, increased cholesterol and triglycerides, hair growth, missed periods, difficulty in wound healing, osteoporosis, acne, stretch marks, red spots on the skin, and fluid retention.

In the case of creams, it may cause irritation and itching in the area where it is applied.


It should not be used by people allergic to glucocorticoids or any component of the medicine.

Similarly, this medicine is also contraindicated in people who are suffering from osteoporosis, gastric or duodenal ulcers, glaucoma, swollen glands, tuberculosis, poliomyelitis or any viral infection like chickenpox, herpes and shingles.

Methylprednisolone should not be used by women who are pregnant or suspected to be pregnant, as well as women during breastfeeding without consulting their treating doctor.

You should not take this methylprednisolone without taking other medicines like antibiotics, antidiabetics, muscle relaxers, medicines to treat epilepsy, ketoconazole, estrogens, diuretics, theophylline and if you have recently had vaccinations. It is important to inform the treating doctor about any medicines you are taking.

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