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Dexamethasone oral

Important Note

The following information is intended to supplement, not substitute for, the expertise and judgment of your physician, pharmacist or other healthcare professional. It should not be construed to indicate that use of the drug is safe, appropriate, or effective for you. Consult your healthcare professional before using this drug.



COMMON BRAND NAME(S): Decadron, Hexadrol


Dexamethasone is a corticosteroid that reduces swelling and inflammation and is used in a variety of disorders such as skin diseases (psoriasis, hives), allergic conditions, breathing problems, cancer, blood disorders (anemia), digestive problems, eye disorders and for arthritis/bursitis.

How To Use

Take with food or immediately after a meal to prevent stomach upset. Take this medication as prescribed. Follow the dosing schedule carefully. Be sure to ask your doctor if you have any questions. If you are taking this medication only once a day, it should be taken in the morning before 9 a.m. The oral concentrate can be mixed with juice or applesauce. If you have been taking this medication for a long time, do not suddenly stop taking it without your doctor's approval. Your dose may need to be gradually reduced.

Side Effects

May cause dizziness, nausea, indigestion, increased appetite, weight gain, weakness or sleep disturbances. If these effects persist or worsen, contact your doctor. Notify your doctor if you experience: vomiting of blood, black or tarry stools, puffing of the face, swelling of the ankles or feet, unusual weight gain, prolonged sore throat or fever, muscle weakness, breathing difficulties, mental/mood changes. In the unlikely event you have an allergic reaction to this drug, seek immediate medical attention. Symptoms of an allergic reaction include: rash, itching, swelling, dizziness, trouble breathing. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist.


Do not have a vaccination, other immunization, or any skin test while you are taking this drug unless your doctor specifically tells you that you may. Before you take this drug, tell your doctor if you are pregnant, think that you may be pregnant or wish to become pregnant. If you become pregnant, contact your doctor. Because this drug appears in breast milk contact your doctor before breast-feeding. This medication can cause growth suppression in infants. Before you take this drug, tell your doctor your entire medical history, particularly: liver or kidney disease, heart disease, intestinal problems, underactive thyroid gland, high blood pressure, myasthenia gravis, osteoporosis (brittle bones), herpes eye infection, history of tuberculosis (TB) or seizures, history of ulcers or blood clots. If you have a history of ulcers or take large doses of aspirin or other arthritis medication, limit your consumption of alcoholic beverages while taking this medication. It may make your stomach and intestines more susceptible to the irritating effects of alcohol, aspirin, and certain arthritis medications. Report any injuries or signs of infection (fever, sore throat, pain during urination, and muscle aches) that occur during treatment and within 12 months after treatment with this drug. Your dose may need to be adjusted or you may need to start taking the drug again. If you have diabetes, this drug may increase your blood sugar level. Test your urine for sugar (glucose) frequently and contact your doctor if sugar is present; your dose of diabetes medication and your diet may need to be changed. If your sputum (the matter you cough up during an asthma attack) thickens or changes color from clear white to yellow, green, or gray, contact your doctor; these changes may be signs of an infection.

Drug Interactions

Before you take this drug, tell your doctor what prescription and nonprescription medications you are taking, especially: aspirin, arthritis medication, anticoagulants ("blood thinners"), diuretics ("water pills"), estrogen (e.g., birth control pills), phenytoin, rifampin, phenobarbital, macrolide antibiotics (e.g., erythromycin), ketoconazole, neostigmine, pyridostigmine, ambenomium, certain drugs for diabetes (e.g., glyburide, glipizide). Do not start or stop any medicine without doctor or pharmacist approval.


If overdose is suspected, contact your local poison control center or emergency room immediately.


Persons taking this medication for long-term therapy should wear or carry identification stating that they are taking a corticosteroid. Do not allow anyone else to take this medication.

Missed Dose

If you miss a dose, and are taking 1 dose every other day: take the missed dose as soon as remembered if you remember the same morning, then resume your usual schedule. If you do not remember the missed dose until later, skip the missed dose and resume your regular dosing schedule the following day. If you take 1 dose daily, take the missed dose as soon as remembered then resume your regular dosing schedule. If you do not remember until the next day, skip the missed dose. Do not "double-up" the dose. If you take 2 or more doses daily, take the missed dose as soon as remembered unless it is near time for the next dose. In that case, take the missed and next dose together.


Store at room temperature between 59 and 86 degrees F (between 15 and 30 degrees C) away from moisture, heat and sunlight. Do not store in the bathroom.

Medical Alert

Your condition can cause complications in a medical emergency. For enrollment information call MedicAlert at 1-800-854-1166 (USA), or 1-800-668-1507 (Canada).