Corticosteroid myopathy presents as weakness and wasting of the proximal limb and girdle muscles and is generally reversible following cessation of therapy.
Corticosteroids inhibit intestinal calcium absorption and increase urinary calcium excretion leading to bone resorption and bone loss. Bone loss of 3% over one year has been demonstrated with prednisolone 10 mg per day. Postmenopausal females are particularly at risk for loss of bone density. Sixteen percent of elderly patients treated with corticosteroids for 5 years may experience vertebral compression fractures. One author reported measurable bone loss over two years in women on concomitant therapy with prednisolone mg per day and tamoxifen. [ Ref ]
I have found Tai Chi to be an excellent exercise for me both in the early days of PMR/GCA and right through to the present when I am at 1mg. It has been of enormous benefit to my balance which was all over the place after being bedbound for several months during the first year of undiagnosed PMR. Apart from balance, it is excellent for breathing and relaxation techniques and for those little grey cells as there's quite a lot to remember! :? I believe Mrs G has just taken up the walking poles again so perhaps we'll hear from her soon about her experience too.
Corticosteroids inhibit the inflammatory response to a variety of inciting agents and probably delay or slow healing. They inhibit the edema , fibrin deposition, capillary dilation , leukocyte migration, capillary proliferation, fibroblast proliferation, deposition of collagen , and scar formation associated with inflammation . There is no generally accepted explanation for the mechanism of action of ocular corticosteroids. However, corticosteroids are thought to act by the induction of phospholipase A 2 inhibitory proteins , collectively called lipocortins. It is postulated that these proteins control the biosynthesis of potent mediators of inflammation such as prostaglandins and leukotrienes by inhibiting the release of their common precursor arachidonic acid. Arachidonic acid is released from membrane phospholipids by phospholipase A 2 .