Medrol Dose Pack - What You Need to Know

Medrol Dose Pack Must Be Taken According to Specific Instructions

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Medrol (methylprednisolone) dose pack (also spelled dosepak) is a corticosteroid used to treat and control inflammation associated with arthritis and other conditions. Medrol is marketed by Pharmacia and Upjohn.

When Is Medrol Dose Pack Prescribed?

Medrol is used to quickly suppress inflammation. It is commonly prescribed to bring an arthritis flare under control which is associated with active inflammation.

It is used to treat:

Medrol is also used to treat severe allergic reactions and chronic skin conditions.

Are There Any Special Instructions Regarding How to Take Medrol Dose Pack?

Medrol is available as 2, 4, 8, 16, 24, and 32 mg tablets. Medrol is also available as an injectable solution: 20, 40, and 80 mg/ml. While Medrol can be prescribed at various daily doses or as alternate day therapy, the typical Medrol dose pack is marketed as 4 mg tablets given over 6 days in decreasing dosages. Directions for the Medrol dose pack are:

  • Day 1: 2 tablets before breakfast, 1 tablet after lunch, 1 tablet after dinner, 2 tablets at bedtime
  • Day 2: 1 tablet before breakfast, 1 tablet after lunch, 1 tablet after dinner, 2 tablets at bedtime
  • Day 3: 1 tablet before breakfast, 1 tablet after lunch, 1 tablet after dinner, 1 tablet at bedtime
  • Day 4: 1 tablet before breakfast, 1 tablet after lunch, 1 tablet at bedtime
  • Day 5: 1 tablet before breakfast, 1 tablet at bedtime
  • Day 6: 1 tablet before breakfast

Are There People Who Should Not Take Medrol Dose Pack?

People who have known allergy to the components of Medrol should not take the medication.

There are many situations in which Medrol should be used with caution, including active or chronic infection, diabetes mellitus, congestive heart failure, or psychiatric illness.

Can Side Effects Occur With the Medrol Dose Pack?

Side effects associated with Medrol are largely dependent on the dose and how often it is taken. Short courses of Medrol, as is the case with the Medrol dose pack, are usually well-tolerated with no or few mild side effects. Long-term or high-dose Medrol is more problematic.

What Special Warnings and Precautions Are Associated with Medrol Dose Pack?

You should take the Medrol dose pack exactly as prescribed. The directions must be followed precisely. You should not stop taking the drug suddenly on their own. Call your doctor if you have side effects or problems that make you want to stop the drug before the 6-day course is finished.

Are There Drug Interactions Associated with Medrol Dose Pack?

Be sure to tell your doctor about all other medications and supplements you take.

The following drugs may interact with Medrol (this is not an all-inclusive list):

  • blood thinners, such as Coumadin
  • arthritis medications, such as NSAIDs
  • aspirin
  • azithromycin, clarithromycin, erythromycin
  • cyclosporine (Neoral, Sandimmune)
  • digoxin (Lanoxin)
  • diuretics (water pills)
  • estrogen (Premarin)
  • ketoconazole (Nizoral)
  • oral contraceptives
  • phenobarbital
  • phenytoin (Dilantin)
  • rifampin (Rifadin)
  • theophylline (Theo-Dur)

Are There Special Instructions for Pregnant or Nursing Women?

Medrol has not been adequately evaluated in pregnant women. Let your doctor know if you are planning to become pregnant or if you do become pregnant while taking Medrol.



Methylprednisolone Oral. MedlinePlus. Reviewed 9/1/2010.

Methylprednisolone: Drug Information. Lexicomp.  UpToDate.

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