Deflazacort is used to treat Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD; a progressive disease in which the muscles do not function properly) in adults and children 2 years of age and older. Deflazacort is in a class of medications called corticosteroids. It works by reducing inflammation (swelling) and by changing the way the immune system works.
Deflazacort comes as a tablet and a suspension (liquid) to take by mouth. It is usually taken once a day with or without food. Take deflazacort at around the same time every day. Follow the directions on your prescription label carefully, and ask your doctor or pharmacist to explain any part you do not understand. Take deflazacort exactly as directed. Do not take more or less of it or take it more often than prescribed by your doctor.
If you cannot swallow the tablet whole, you may crush the tablet and mix with applesauce. The mixture should be taken immediately.
Shake the suspension well before each use to mix the medication evenly. Use the measuring device to measure the dose of deflazacort and slowly add the dose to 3 to 4 ounces (90 to 120 mL) of milk or fruit juice and take immediately. Do not mix deflazacort suspension with grapefruit juice.
Your doctor may need to change your dose of deflazacort if you experience unusual stress on your body such as surgery, illness, or infection. Tell your doctor if your symptoms improve or get worse or if you get sick or have any changes in your health during your treatment.
Do not stop taking deflazacort without talking to your doctor. Stopping the drug abruptly may cause symptoms such as loss of appetite, an upset stomach, vomiting, drowsiness, confusion, headache, fever, joint and muscle pain, peeling skin, and weight loss. Your doctor will probably decrease your dose gradually to allow your body to adjust before stopping the drug completely. Watch for these side effects if you are gradually decreasing your dose and after you stop taking the tablets or oral suspension. If these problems occur, call your doctor immediately.
Ask your pharmacist or doctor for a copy of the manufacturer's information for the patient.
This medication may be prescribed for other uses; ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.
Before taking deflazacort,
Do not eat of grapefruit or drink grapefruit juice while taking this medication.
Take the missed dose as soon as you remember it. However, if it is almost time for the next dose, skip the missed dose and continue your regular dosing schedule. Do not take a double dose to make up for a missed one.
Deflazacort may cause side effects. Tell your doctor if any of these symptoms are severe or do not go away:
Some side effects can be serious. If you experience any of these symptoms, call your doctor immediately:
Deflazacort may slow growth and development in children. Your child's doctor will watch his or her growth carefully. Talk to your child's doctor about the risks of giving deflazacort to your child.
People who use deflazacort for a long time may develop glaucoma or cataracts. Talk to your doctor about the risks of using deflazacort and how often you should have your eyes examined during your treatment.
Deflazacort may increase your risk of developing osteoporosis. Talk to your doctor about the risks of using this medication.
Deflazacort may cause other side effects. Call your doctor if you have any unusual problems while taking this medication.
If you experience a serious side effect, you or your doctor may send a report to the Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) MedWatch Adverse Event Reporting program online ( Web Site ) or by phone (1-800-332-1088).
Keep this medication in the container it came in, tightly closed, and out of reach of children. Store it at room temperature and away from excess heat and moisture (not in the bathroom). Dispose of any unused suspension (liquid) after 1 month.
Unneeded medications should be disposed of in special ways to ensure that pets, children, and other people cannot consume them. However, you should not flush this medication down the toilet. Instead, the best way to dispose of your medication is through a medicine take-back program. Talk to your pharmacist or contact your local garbage/recycling department to learn about take-back programs in your community. See the FDA's Safe Disposal of Medicines website ( Web Site) for more information if you do not have access to a take-back program.
It is important to keep all medication out of sight and reach of children as many containers (such as weekly pill minders and those for eye drops, creams, patches, and inhalers) are not child-resistant and young children can open them easily. To protect young children from poisoning, always lock safety caps and immediately place the medication in a safe location – one that is up and away and out of their sight and reach. Web Site
In case of overdose, call the poison control helpline at 1-800-222-1222. Information is also available online at Web Site. If the victim has collapsed, had a seizure, has trouble breathing, or can't be awakened, immediately call emergency services at 911.
Keep all appointments with your doctor and the laboratory. Your doctor will check your blood pressure regularly and order certain lab tests to check your body's response to deflazacort.
Before having any laboratory test, tell your doctor and the laboratory personnel that you are taking deflazacort.
Do not let anyone else take your medication. Ask your pharmacist any questions you have about refilling your prescription.
It is important for you to keep a written list of all of the prescription and nonprescription (over-the-counter) medicines you are taking, as well as any products such as vitamins, minerals, or other dietary supplements. You should bring this list with you each time you visit a doctor or if you are admitted to a hospital. It is also important information to carry with you in case of emergencies.
AHFS® Consumer Medication Information. © Copyright, The American Society of Health-System Pharmacists, Inc., 7272 Wisconsin Avenue, Bethesda, Maryland. All Rights Reserved. Duplication for commercial use must be authorized by ASHP.
Selected Revisions: September 15, 2019.