Side Effects of Prednisone in Children


Prednisone is a type of synthetic steroid given to children and adults to treat medical conditions such as skin disorders, severe allergies and asthma. The side effects of prednisone in children depend on whether the drug is being used for a short or long time period, the dosage and the overall health of the child, and may include immune system dysfunction, behavioral changes and allergic reactions. Consider this from information from about the side effects of prednisone in children.


  • Prednisone can increase a child's susceptibility to common illnesses such as colds, flu and other respiratory infections, especially if the medicine is used for a long time period.

Vaccine Failure

  • Because prednisone decreases a child's immune system responses, failure to respond to childhood vaccines such as varicella (chickenpox) or MMR (measles, mumps and rubella) can be side effects.

Slow Growth

  • Side effects of prednisone in children include slower growth of the bones and decreased weight gain, which may be worse in children on long term prednisone treatment.


  • Children taking prednisone who previously slept well may experience trouble falling asleep, staying asleep or may wake up too early.


  • Prednisone may cause an increased in appetite in children as well as indigestion, which are not considered to be serious side effects.


  • Pain in the muscles, joints and bones, fatigue, weakness and headaches are side effects of prednisone in children that may be treated with pain relievers as recommended by a pediatrician.

Allergic Reaction

  • Prednisone may cause allergic reactions including symptoms such as itching, hives, swollen throat, mouth or face, skin rashes and difficulty breathing, which requires urgent medical treatment.

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