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Question About Corticosteroids: Namely Flovent And Rhinocort


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Hi, everyone,

As treatment for my eosinophilic esophagitis, I have to take two puffs of Flovent a day: Puff it into my mouth and swallow it, so that the corticosteroid absorbs into my esophagus.

I'm also on the nasal corticosteroid, Rhinocort, two squeezes, each nostril, twice a day.

How safe have you all heard that these drugs are? I don't think I'm taking a huge dose of either, and I don't think the docs are intending that I be on them long-term.

I have noticed more muscle pain than usual, since starting them. I've read that this could be a serious side-effect of these types of meds. Why would this be serious, other than the heart is a muscle, as well?

I asked my doctor about these meds causing the muscle pain, and he said no, that my fibromyalgia is probably more to blame for the pain than the meds, but I can't help but correlate the increased pain with the start of the meds.

On the good side, my esophagus is feeling better. I can swallow now more easily, and my flushing and diarrhea episodes are fewer. I've also gained a couple of pounds.

Thanks, everyone, for any information you can give me.


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The steroids you mention are considered "topical" because they are being applied to the surface that they need to go to: namely, the esophagus and the nasal passages. So you get more bang for a smaller dose than if you had to take a pill or shot. Thus, smaller doses are used, which improves the safety profile. If you are going to be taking steroids for a long time, you might want to monitor your bone density. I don't know whether the steroids have anything to do with your muscle pain.

My question is whether they have considered giving you a mast cell stabilizer, like cromolyn sodium (Gastrocrom or Nasalcrom). You can take these along with the steroids, I think.

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I had been on the nasal version of flovent, flonase for many years without any adverse effects. Also, I've been on advair, zyrtec, and singulair. Prior to that, I was on flovent , but when advair was released, I was switched to it. I was recently switched to nasonex instead of flonase, although pending an ENT visit tomorrow, that could change. None of the above have caused any side effects for me--except for a little sleepiness with zyrtec, so I switched to dosing at night instead.


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