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Post-Steroid Depression?

Dear all,

Having just tapered off Prednisolone, which (for me at least) did the trick in terms of CD symptoms, I've now instead found I have very low mood and am feeling really quite down, grumpy and depressed.

Has anyone else had these symptoms? I was aware that one of the possible side-effects of taking Pred was low-mood and depression, but not when you've *stopped* taking it (!).

A slightly bemused and confused, Tony.


Super Moderator
I'm going through something similar myself. I was on Entocort for about 7 months and just finished it a little over a week ago. Since then I've definitely felt more depressed than usual. I know that steroids can mess with a lot of things so it wouldn't surprise me that coming off of them is affecting my moods and mental state. I've gradually been feeling less depressed bit by bit over the past couple of days, so I hope you're able to feel better again soon too.
Many thanks Cat-a-Tonic — hopefully it *is* just a transitory thing, and will soon pass. I really don't want to start taking even more medication to counteract side-effects!

thanks for that info. My daughter is on Entocort right now also. she will probably be on it for a few more months. She has only been taking it for about 2 1/2 months now.
My question is: she switched & takes the Entocort now at night instead of in the a.m. She has noticed a pain now in her lower left chest area; not in the middle; she said it doesn't feel like the heartburn she has had occasionally.
Has anyone seen a difference or had this pain before with Entocort??
Hi Tony

I was exactly the same! I never suffered the usual mood swings or depression while I was on pred, even when i was really ill I was overly chirpy sometimes. It was when I came off them that I felt really low and fed up. I can't remember how long it took to feel normal again, but I promise it does happen (at least I think this is normal lol)

Lyndsey xx
Thanks Lyndsey —I definitely had a slight euphoria whilst on the Pred — was up, around and buzzing (!) which certainly made a nice change. I think I'll just have to tough it out, and hope I feel a little better soon. Nice to know I'm not the only one to have this kind of issue.

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Super Moderator
M2M: Why is your daughter taking Entocort at night? I was always told that with steroids, you should take them when you first wake up, as they can sometimes give you a lot of energy so it's best to try to burn off some of that energy during the day, that makes it easier to get to sleep at night. As for her new pain, I haven't experienced pain in that particular area so I'm not sure about that.
Tony I am tapering off Pred too and the 5mg per day reduction has had quite significant effects. Not quite as high as I was on 20mg but still a bit spaced out, had headaches first few days, sudden sweats and went to bed in the middle of the day today and slept for 3 hours.
If you're really worried I would talk to your GP. What's happening after you're off the Pred?
Grumbletum — many thanks for your reply.

I've been quite lucky, in that I didn't really have any major symptoms whilst I was on Prednisolone, just a little bit of 'moon-face'. I seem to be having slightly more problems since coming off the drug completely(!)

I'm due to see my GP and GI consultant next week, so as you suggest, I'll raise my questions then.

In answer to your query — I'm very likely to be put onto Azathioprine / Mercaptopurine next. My GI is quite keen, as I've had a very good response to the steroids, which he seems to think is a good indicator that I'll respond well to the mercaptopurine.

Hope you don't have any more problems with the tapering.

With thanks,
as i am going down on prednisone, last week i got really depressed and almost did something stupid.. thank god my son coughed in his sleep.. i dont no what happen all i know is one night i got really really depressed and i couldnt stop crying and i looked at the sleeping pills and thats when my son coughed in his crib..


Super Moderator
Spcwife, that's scary! I'm glad you didn't do anything harmful to yourself. If it's that bad that you've had those kind of thoughts, please please talk to your doctor about it ASAP.
Spcwife23 - if you're having those kind of depressive thoughts, I would definitely do exactly as Cat-a-tonic suggests and seek immediate help from your Doctor. Hope things look up for you soon. Best wishes and sympathy, Tony.
I had the exact feelings leithcote. It lasted about a week for me. I had to get back on Pred and am now tapering off again and NOT looking forward to those feelings but this time I will know it does go away. :)

Many thanks for your comment — I'm feeling slightly more up-beat, knowing that it is most likely just a side-effect of coming off the Pred, and that others have had similar problems. I'll just grin and bear it and know that it's likely to be transitory(!). More blood tests to look forward to tomorrow too ;-P
im so glad that others are feeling what im feeling and its not all in my head.. i heard of the agressivness of being on preds which i had when i was higher but not anymore since i lower the dosage.. how are you guys dealing with the depression? i dont want to add more meds on top of every thing else im taking..

i try to go outside and not be in the house much, and it helps when im busy doing something.
Spcwife..... to answer your question on how did I handle the depression, I will have to say I think the worst for me coming off the Pred was the pain. I had bad joint/muscle pain and headaches. It was painful to even walk. I know we aren't supposed to take asprin but Excedrin was the only thing that touched my headaches and joint pain. I was willing to deal with a flair-up because of the Excedrin, just to get rid of the pain. And it worked.......no flair and the pain got way better.

I'm very blessed to have an awesome husband that did everything he could to help me get through that rough week. He would massage my aching body, and his fun spirit, compassion and loving attitude helped me be more up-beat. I fought the depression and prayed a lot. And it soon passed.

Like I said above, I'm tapering off Pred again, and I'm at 10mg now. Last time I tapered, it was at 15 to 10 mg that I had the most problems (joint pain and headaches and depression) and I wasn't on anything else. But this time as I taper off, everything is different. No joint pain, headaches or depression !! This time I'm on Remicade ! I have received two infusions so far. WOW, this is the first sign of Remicade kicking in! YEAH !!

Tony.......Good luck hun with your blood tests :)

I don't know about you all, but since being diagnosed with Crohn's, I am constantly paying close attention to everything about my body and how I react to things (meds, foods, stress, etc.) or how I'm feeling. And in turn, it began to control my whole life. I think I was over-thinking every pain or symptom so I decided to try to take this attention off myself and put this energy towards other things/people in my life. This has REALLY helped.

Happy thoughts and Good wishes to you good people :)