Triamcinolone (Injection)

Triamcinolone is used to address various medical conditions including inflammation (swelling), certain strains of arthritis, skin diseases and gout, among other ailments.

Overview

Triamcinolone is a corticosteroid (steroid or cortisone-like medicine) that works by decreasing the body's immunity to disease and thus reducing symptoms such as inflammation (swelling). The dose can be taken through injection into specific locations such as muscle (intramuscularly), joint (intra-articularly), skin lesion (intradermally) - usually by qualified professionals. However, you can administer the medicine to yourself after proper instructions by a doctor.

Triamcinolone can treat a variety of conditions, among them skin diseases as well as specific allergic disorders. Although the disease may have several side effects, usage according to specifications can avoid unnecessary complications that might arise even from usage alongside other drugs.

Additionally, Triamcinolone is used to treat many diverse conditions such as ulcerative colitis, skin conditions, allergic disorders, arthritis, psoriasis, lupus, or breathing disorders.

Conditions Treated

  • Skin diseases
  • Allergic disorders
  • Blood diseases
  • Breathing problems
  • Certain Cancers
  • Collagen
  • Intestinal disorders
  • Eye diseases
  • Certain strains of arthritis
  • Gout
  • Inflammation (swelling)

Type of Medicine

  • Corticosteroid hormone (glucocorticoid)

Side Effects

Medicine, together with its desired effects, may bring about some undesired results as well. It's not guaranteed that the side effects will always occur, but whenever they do, they require strict and immediate medical attention.

The more common side effects associated with Triamcinolone use are:

  • Agitation
  • Aggression
  • Blurred vision
  • Anxiety, dizziness
  • Decreased amount of urine
  • Headache
  • Irregular heartbeat or pulse, which could be faster, slower, or pounding
  • Mental depression
  • Irritability
  • Mood changes
  • Psychological distress
  • Nervousness
  • Having numbness in arms and legs
  • Noisy - rattling breathing
  • Breath shortness
  • Pounding in the ears
  • Trouble with thinking, walking or even speaking
  • Experiencing swelling of the fingers, feet, hands, lower legs
  • Weight gain
  • Troubled with breathing at rest

Other incidences may include:

  • Abdominal pain
  • Cramping or severe burning
  • Backaches
  • Bloody or black or tarry stools
  • Skin darkening
  • A cough, diarrhea
  • Eye pain and tearing
  • Decreased vision
  • Dry mouth
  • Facial hair growth in females
  • Fatigue
  • Fainting
  • Flushed, dry skin
  • Fever or chills
  • Fractures
  • Full or round face
  • Neck or trunk and fruit-like breath odor

The patient may also have:

  •  Instances of increased hunger
  • Thirst and urination
  • Loss of appetite and/or sexual desire
  • Menstrual irregularities
  • Muscle pain or tenderness
  • Muscle wasting or weakness
  • Pain in back, ribs or limbs
  • Sleeplessness
  • Skin rash
  • Unexplained weight loss
  • Vomiting and vomiting of material resembling coffee grounds

Some side effects may occur but may disappear without the need for medical attention, as the body adjusts itself to the prescription. The doctor will advise you in case the side effects have nothing to worry about, but if they do not disappear, seek medical help for the following:

  • Bruising
  • Dry, scaly skin, blemishes on skin
  • Full or bloated feeling
  • Increased appetite
  • Increased hair growing in the body, especially on the forehead, back, and limbs
  • Pimples
  • Large patches on the skin
  • Reddish-blue lines on face, arms, trunk, legs or groin
  • Redness, swelling, tenderness, or pain at the injection site
  • Small, purple or red spots on skin
  • Thin, shiny or fragile skin, and thinning of scalp hair.

Typically, only a handful of patients may experience side effects, while others experience minimal effects while on Triamcinolone. The medicine is intended for alleviating the aforementioned conditions, but with considerations of side effects, it is more beneficial than risky to administer it.

Some of the side effects are not listed here but may be exhibited by some patients. Check with your medical care professional if you notice more side effects. Call your doctor in case of the side effects.

Dosage

As with any medication, Triamcinolone must be taken only as the physician prescribes it. This means that patients should desist from consuming more than the drug advised, either in the amounts expended or the frequency. Also, patients must stop using the drug once the doctor orders them to do so, regardless of whether the supply remains.

Triamcinolone must be administered by a nurse or a professionally trained health practitioner. The nurse may also teach you how to give yourself the medicine when you are at home. The cure is given in the form of an injection shot to one of your joints, muscles or a spot on the skin known as a lesion.

Triamcinolone may be taken with food, but patients may also receive it prior or following a meal. Since the dosage is different from one patient to another, it is vital that close attention is paid to the doctor's instructions during the prescription of the medication. The instructions printed on the side of the bottle can provide directions as well, and should be similar. As the physician provides the prescriptive use, he or she takes various factors into account, such as the strength of the medicine, the frequency of doses, the intervals between prescriptions, as well as the medication period for determining the dose size.

Triamcinolone's manufacturer has provided basic instructions for dosage, but doctors are allowed to alter these recommendations as they see fit. The primary concern to establish the frequency and dose size will be the factors from the discussion between the patient and the physician.

Patients are warned from taking double dosages. If a patient misses a dose, he or she can intake the treatment once they realize it, but if it happens to be close to the time for the next dosage, he or she will skip the omitted dosage and take the next dose.

In addition to helping the doctor with information regarding allergies and drugs they are taking currently, a patient needs to advise a doctor about their medical history and thus their current health problems. When deciding the use of medicine, the risks must be weighed against the benefits by both the doctor and patient. For Triamcinolone, these factors need consideration:

  • Allergies

Your doctor needs to know if you have had any unusual allergic reaction towards Triamcinolone or any other drug. Also, let the health practitioner know if you have different forms of allergies, to substances such as foods, animals, preservatives or dyes. For non-prescription use, check the package's ingredient details carefully.

  • Pediatric

Studies performed concerning this drug have not indicated problems that are pediatric-specific, and that would cause limitation to the use of triamcinolone injection in the younger ones. Regardless, considering its toxicity, much caution should be taken for premature babies.

  • Geriatric

There has not been any evidence from the studies taken that would limit the administration of Triamcinolone injection in the elderly population.

  • Pregnancy

Animal studies indicate adverse effects, and there are not sufficient studies in the injection of Triamcinolone in pregnant women.

  • Breastfeeding

There are not sufficient studies in women that determine infants' risk during breastfeeding while the mother uses this medication. Weigh the possible dangers against the benefits before administering this drug while breastfeeding.

The medication contains benzyl alcohol, a substance that may lead to severe reactions, such as gasping syndrome, metabolic acidosis and low blood pressure in babies and premature infants. If this concerns you, mention it to your doctor for further advice before using the triamcinolone.

If a patient experiences effects of an overdose of Triamcinolone, (extremely fast or in other cases slow heartbeat, shallow or difficult breathing, seizures, unconsciousness, flushed skin or loss of coordination), they must seek immediate attention.

Major Drug Interactions

Although some drugs should not be used simultaneously at all, in some cases, it's necessary to combine two medicines, and although they may interact in the process, their benefits outweigh the risks. In some cases, the doctor may advise you to alter the dose or take other precautions as necessary. If you are receiving this medication, it's crucial to let your doctor know if you are on a prescription for the following drugs.

Using this medicine together with any of the following drugs is not recommended, and your doctor may decide to alter the medicine you are taking currently or not treat you with medication altogether.

The usage of this medication along with some any of these following drugs may accelerate the risks of some side effect, although it may be recommended to use both by the medical practitioner. The doctor may alter the dosage if both are to be used jointly, in terms of quantity or frequency.

  • Aspirin
  • Besifloxacin
  • Enoxacin
  • Flumequine
  • Gallamine
  • Hexafluorenium
  • Licorice
  • Metocurine
  • Nadifloxacin
  • Ofloxacin
  • Pefloxacin
  • Primidone
  • Rufloxacin
  • Sparfloxacin

Other drugs include:

  • Alcuronium
  • Atracurium
  • Balofloxacin
  • Ciprofloxacin
  • Fleroxacin
  • Fosphenytoin
  • Gatifloxacin
  • Gemifloxacin
  • Levofloxacin
  • Lomefloxacin
  • Moxifloxacin
  • Norfloxacin
  • Pazufloxacin
  • Phenytoin
  • Prulifloxacin
  • Saiboku
  • Tosufloxacin

Other Interactions

Certain drugs should not be used while taking certain foods since it may result in undesired interactions. Using some medicines at the time one is under the influence of alcohol or tobacco may lead to specific interferences. Advise your health practitioner on your particular usage of alcohol, or smoking, and even other food types.

The case of other medical problems

The occurrence of different other medical issues may affect the usage of this medicine. If you have any of the following medical conditions, be sure to notify your doctor.

  • Bone problems (e.g., osteoporosis)
  • Cirrhosis (liver problem)
  • Depression
  • Heart attack, recent
  • Hypertension (high blood pressure)
  • Kaposi's sarcoma
  • Mental illness
  • Stomach and/or bowel problems (e.g., ulcers, diverticulitis, ulcerative colitis)
  • Brain injury, traumatic
  • Cataracts
  • Congestive heart failure
  • Emotional problems
  • Glaucoma
  • Heart disease
  • Intracranial hypertension (increased pressure in the head)
  • Kidney disease, severe
  • Myasthenia gravis (extreme muscle weakness)
  • Thyroid problems - maintain caution. May worsen the conditions
  • Cerebral malaria

Warnings

If you're allergic to Triamcinolone or if you have a fungal infection in your body you should not use this medication. Triamcinolone may lead to a severe allergic reaction known as anaphylaxis, which can be a fatal condition and thus calls for immediate medical attention. In case you or your child have a rash, or more symptoms, see your doctor right away. Your doctor may prescribe you with corticosteroids in case you have any events leading to high anxiety or stress.

The medicine may bring about cases of fluid retention (edema) in some patients. Follow the instructions the doctor gives you carefully on any special diets, such as those that involve high salt intake.

If you use too much of this drug, or you take for a prolonged period, you may increase the risk of contracting adrenal gland issues. The risk increases with usage in children and the extended use by patients. Call your doctor if you get any symptoms as discussed in the side effects section.

It becomes easier for you to contract other diseases while you are on this medication, thus avoid crowded areas or infected people with measles or chicken pox. If you are exposed, tell your doctor right away.

If you and your child are on this medicine, before you get flu shots of any sort, as well as other vaccines, talk with the doctor since there are some vaccinations you cannot receive.

In case you have difficulty reading, blurred vision or other sorts of visual change, immediately check with the doctor. Your physician may refer you to an ophthalmologist (eye doctor).

Before you have a skin test, let the doctor in charge know that you are taking this drug, it may affect the results of the test.

Do not cease using this medicine before notifying your doctor; they may want you to slow out of it gradually.

This medicine may lead to slow growth, and if your child is on the drug, your doctor will require taking the child's height to monitor its growth regularly.

Storage

Triamcinolone should be stored at room temperature. Avoid freezing temperatures at all times, and away from light and moisture. Do not keep in the washroom.

Do not flush medications in the toilet or throw into drains unless with instructions. Properly discard this product when it's no longer needed or expired. Consult a pharmacist or the local disposal company to dispose of this drug properly.

Summary

While Triamcinolone has excellent medicinal benefits, it can be potentially risky for patients who do not communicate with their physicians. As a drug designed to alleviate symptoms in various conditions including skin and eye diseases, blood diseases, collagen and gout among many others, Triamcinolone also causes side effects such as trouble sleeping, headaches, and many others. Some symptoms are typical with the medicine and wear away in no time, but in other cases, the drug may work differently, and one must seek help.

The use of Triamcinolone is restricted to one's medical condition, if for example, they suffer from other diseases or allergies, such as bone problems, cerebral malaria or brain injury, and thus a patient must communicate adequately with the doctor to avoid further complications. Similarly, if a patient is on other medicines, they should let the doctors know, as the drug may interact with the Triamcinolone and bring further complications, such as Rotavirus Vaccine, pixantrone, and ritonavir, as well as much more.

Patients are warned against taking an overdose of the drug, even though they are making up for a missed dosage. Also, the drug must be stored in a moisture-free environment and away from freezing temperatures and humidity at all times. Also, do not use this medication without instruction and prescription from a qualified practitioner.

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Last Reviewed:
December 24, 2017
Last Updated:
April 26, 2018
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