Posted , 7 users are following.
I've been using Symbicort for about 10 months and knew that one of the possible side effects of cortisone is cataracts, which I felt was a risk worth taking given that prior to being prescribed Symbicort I was getting very little sleep bc of incessant coughing. I was initially using it twice in the morning & twice at night but due to bad leg cramps (another common side effect) I cut it back to one inhalation twice a day. A few months ago I decided to check if the cramps would return if I upped the dose to the original prescription and they didn't, so I've been using it at that higher rate for about 2 or 3 months.
In May I went for new glasses and was told I had the start of cataracts in both eyes, the right eye being more advanced than the left, but not at a stage requiring surgery. I spoke to my practice nurse, who has post grad pulmonary qualifications, and was told most of the powder in steroid puffers stays in the lungs and wouldn't cause or escalate cataracts.
The right eye cataract is now advanced enough for me to have been put on the urgent list for surgery, which will take place either before xmas or early in the new year.
The surgeon told me that I have a classic steroid created, fast escalating cataract and that the left eye will have to be done later on when I've recovered from the right eye operation, and that she sees this quite often in patients using steroid puffers for COPD.
I"m not suggesting anyone not use or stop using steroid puffers, just letting others know what's happened to me, because neither my GP nor my practice nurse had heard of it, and I reckon it will become even more common as all us baby boomer ex smokers reach COPD stage.
0 likes, 24 replies