We are using cookies to give you the best experience on our site. Cookies are files stored in your browser and are used by most websites to help personalise your web experience.

By continuing to use our website without changing the settings, you are agreeing to our use of cookies.

Find out more
For more information, go to

Steroid tablets

Print page Open all Reset all

What are steroid tablets and why are they prescribed?

Steroids are a type of drug. Prednisolone is the most commonly prescribed steroid tablet. Read more >

How do I take steroid tablets and how long do they take to work?

Steroid tablets are usually taken once a day in the morning or sometimes every other day, with or after food. Prednisolone can work very quickly and you may notice an effect in a few days. Read more >

What are the possible risks and side-effects of steroid tablets?

Side-effects of steroid tablets can include weight gain, osteoporosis, stomach pains and thinning of the skin.

Read more >

Can steroid tablets affect other medicines and treatments?

Steroids may be prescribed along with other drugs. However, some drugs interact with steroid tablets, so you should discuss any new medications with your doctor before starting them, and you should tell anyone else treating you that you're taking steroid tablets.

Read more >

Can I drink alcohol if I'm on steroid tablets?

Both alcohol and steroids can potentially upset the stomach. If you have indigestion or other stomach problems after starting steroid treatment then alcohol is likely to add to the problem, so you may want to cut back on how much alcohol you drink.

Read more >

Can steroid tablets affect fertility, pregnancy or breastfeeding?

Current guidelines state that steroid tablets can be taken during pregnancy and they are often used to treat disease flares at this time. If you’re planning a family you should discuss this with your doctor beforehand.

Read more >
For more information, go to or call 0300 790 0400 to order the complete printed booklet.
Arthritis Research UK fund research into the cause, treatment and cure of arthritis. You can support Arthritis Research UK by volunteering, donating or visiting our shops.