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Anyone have experience with "steroid bursts" when traveling or having a flare?

After several months of weaning steroids I am finally off of them. Except - I've had to do 3 day bursts twice when traveling, with my Rheum's advice. Do you use bursts to get you through a rough time? Does it cause withdrawal problems for you?

  1. Hi J0dspace. Hopefully some community members will offer their experiences with steroid bursts. I can tell you that my wife, Kelly Mack (a contributor here), has worked out with her doctor to increase her prednisone during a flare and sometimes preemptively when traveling. She writes about her flare action plan here: Because she is on a regular dose of prednisone, withdrawal isn't really an issue. She simply goes back to her original dose (she hasn't even increased enough that tapering is an issue). Your doctor should be able to advise on tapering or dealing with any withdrawal issues. Wishing you the best. Richard ( Team)

    1. Thanks for the link to Kelly's article. I flare every time I travel to visit my grandkids (aqes 3mos to 8 years - very active trips!), which lately has been frequent. I am off of daily Medrol now so at my June appointment I hope to get a prn flare dosage plan set. Unfortunately, I've had to stop my MTX and Humira is only about 50-75% effective. The only time I've been pain free is on higher doses of steroids which my Rheum reminds is not a feasible long tern plan. So we will see where we go from here.

      1. Sorry to hear that you feel the Humira is only 50-75% effective J0dspace. While what constitutes control is different for everyone, if you feel your RA is not well controlled, it is good that you are looking to have this discussion with your doctor. Kelly has been having medication issues over the last 6 months (a change that may not be working). While her doctor is willing to give a treatment time and not change just for the sake of change, he does point out that there are options. In this article one of our other contributors writes about a doctor who would not let him settle for the occasional flare: Best and keep us posted on how you are doing. Richard ( Team)

    2. I used to have tolerance issues with oral steroids: heart palpitations, stomach issues, etc. I have found that a steroid injection works better for me without the side effects.

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