Glucocorticoids for therapeutic immunosuppression: Clinical pearls for the practicing neurologist

Alexandra Galati, E. Sherwood Brown, Riley Bove, Anand Vaidya, Jeffrey Gelfand

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations


Given widespread use of glucocorticoid therapy in neurologic disease, understanding glucocorticoid pharmacology and risk is paramount for the practicing neurologist. While dosing and tapering regimens vary depending on the neurological disease and indication being treated, there are important general principles of glucocorticoid prescribing and monitoring that can guide clinical decision-making. Glucocorticoid-related toxicities can occur across multiple organ systems, including hypertension; dyslipidemia; weight gain; hyperglycemia; osteoporosis and avascular necrosis; myopathy; gastrointestinal bleeding; infection; and neuropsychiatric effects with sleep, mood disturbance and cognition. This narrative review provides a practical framework for safe and responsible prescribing of this therapeutic class of medications, including appreciation of immunosuppressive consequences, risk mitigation strategies, dosing and tapering, and recognition of adrenal insufficiency and glucocorticoid withdrawal.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number120004
JournalJournal of the Neurological Sciences
StatePublished - Nov 15 2021


  • Glucocorticoid
  • Neurology
  • Risk mitigation
  • Side effect

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology


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