Applies to dexamethasone: oral elixir, oral solution, oral tablet
Along with its needed effects, dexamethasone may cause some unwanted effects. Although not all of these side effects may occur, if they do occur they may need medical attention.
Check with your doctor immediately if any of the following side effects occur while taking dexamethasone:
Incidence not known
Some side effects of dexamethasone may occur that usually do not need medical attention. These side effects may go away during treatment as your body adjusts to the medicine. Also, your health care professional may be able to tell you about ways to prevent or reduce some of these side effects. Check with your health care professional if any of the following side effects continue or are bothersome or if you have any questions about them:
Incidence not known
Applies to dexamethasone: compounding powder, inhalation aerosol with adapter, injectable solution, injectable suspension, intravenous solution, oral concentrate, oral liquid, oral tablet
The most commonly occurring side effects have included alteration in glucose tolerance, behavioral and mood changes, increased appetite, and weight gain; the incidence generally correlates with dosage, timing of administration, and duration of treatment.
A wide range of psychiatric reactions including affective disorders (e.g., irritable, euphoric, depressed, labile mood, and suicidal ideation) psychotic reactions (e.g., mania, delusions, hallucinations, aggravation of schizophrenia), behavioral disturbances, irritability, anxiety, sleep disturbances and cognitive dysfunction (e.g., confusion, amnesia) have been reported. These reactions have been reported in adults and children. In adults, the occurrence of severe reactions has been estimated to be about 5% to 6%.
Frequency not reported: Depression, affective disorders, anxiety, emotional instability, euphoria, insomnia, mood swings, personality changes, psychic disorders, confusional states, anxiety, abnormal behavior, irritability, aggravated schizophrenia
Frequency not reported: Convulsions, headache, increased intracranial pressure with papilledema (pseudotumor cerebri) usually following discontinuation of treatment, benign intracranial hypertension, neuropathy
Frequency not reported: Abdominal distention, nausea, pancreatitis, peptic ulcer, perforation of the small and large intestine, ulcerative esophagitis, gastric hemorrhage, vomiting, abdominal pain, diarrhea, dyspepsia, nausea, flatulence
Frequency not reported: Anaphylactoid reaction, anaphylaxis, angioedema
Frequency not reported: Cushingoid state, hirsutism, secondary adrenocortical and pituitary unresponsiveness (particularly in times of stress, as in trauma, surgery, or illness), moon face
Frequency not reported: Decreased carbohydrate and glucose tolerance, hyperglycemia, glycosuria, manifestations of latent diabetes, hypokalemic alkalosis, potassium loss, sodium retention, increased appetite, negative nitrogen balance due to protein catabolism, weight gain, metabolic acidosis, hypercholesterolemia, hypertriglyceridemia, dyslipidemia
Frequency not reported: Exophthalmos, glaucoma, increased intraocular pressure, posterior subcapsular cataracts, blindness, chorioretinopathy, worsening of symptoms associated with corneal ulcers, retinopathy of prematurity, blurred vision
Rare instances of blindness have been associated with corticosteroid intralesional therapy around the face and head.
Frequency not reported: Bradycardia, cardiac arrest, cardiac arrhythmias, cardiac enlargement, circulatory collapse, congestive heart failure, fat embolism, hypertension, hypertrophic cardiomyopathy in premature infants, myocardial rupture following recent myocardial infarction, syncope, tachycardia, thromboembolism, thrombophlebitis, vasculitis, edema
Frequency not reported: Suppression of growth in pediatric patients, aseptic necrosis of femoral and humeral heads, calcinosis, Charcot-like atrophy, loss of muscle mass, muscle weakness, steroid myopathy. osteoporosis, pathologic fracture of long bones, postinjection flare, tendon rupture, particularly of the Achilles tendon, vertebral compression fractures, myalgia, muscle atrophy, osteonecrosis, neuropathic arthralgia, growth retardation
Corticosteroids can cause a dose-dependent inhibition of growth in infancy, childhood, and adolescence due to it causing early closure of the epiphyses, which may be irreversible.
Frequency not reported: Acne, allergic dermatitis, dry scaly skin, ecchymosis, hirsutism, petechiae, erythema, hyperpigmentation, hypopigmentation, impaired wound healing, increased sweating, rash, sterile abscess, striae, suppressed reactions to skin tests, thin fragile skin, thinning scalp hair, urticaria, hypertrichosis, angioedema, skin atrophy, hyperhidrosis, pruritus, burning or tingling especially in the perineal area (after IV injection), telangiectasia, pigment disorders
Frequency not reported: Leucocytosis, lymphopenia, eosinopenia, polycythemia, abnormal coagulation, polymorphonuclear leukocytosis
Frequency not reported: Menstrual irregularities, amenorrhea, increased or decreased motility and number of spermatozoa, increased urine calcium
Frequency not reported: Hepatomegaly, elevation in liver enzymes
Frequency not reported: Opportunistic infection, exacerbation of latent infections, decreased resistance to infection, immunosuppression, candidiasis, chicken pox (varicella)
Frequency not reported: Vertigo, abnormal fat deposits, malaise, sterile abscess, impaired healing, fatigue, malaise
Frequency not reported: Hiccups, pulmonary edema
Medically reviewed by BestRx Medical Team Last updated on 1/1/2020.
Source: Drugs.com Dexamethasone