CBD Oil And Prednisone

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Studies have shown that CBD possesses potential therapeutic benefits that may help with some symptoms or conditions where prednisone is indicated. Learn more. When you take CBD alongside certain medications, it can trigger negative drug interactions. Here we explain what drugs shouldn’t be taken with CBD — and when to consult your doctor if you’re not sure about the potential interactions. CBD may cause fewer side effects than prednisone but can you safely take the two together? We take a look at how these remedies could interact.

CBD Oil and Prednisone – August 2022

Does CBD interact with prednisone, and if so, are there risks that should cause concern?

Prednisone is a prescription drug used to provide relief for inflamed areas of the body. It is also indicated to treat conditions, such as inflammation (swelling), severe allergies, arthritis , asthma, eye or vision problems, blood or bone marrow problems, and stomach or bowel problems (1 ) .

Moreover, doctors prescribe prednisone to help patients with lupus, skin conditions, endocrine problems, kidney problems, ulcerative colitis, adrenal problems, and flare-ups of multiple sclerosis.

Prednisone is a corticosteroid, or a cortisone-like medicine or steroid. This drug works on the immune system to help relieve swelling, redness, itching, and allergic reactions.

However, this medicine may cause changes in mood or behavior for some patients. Symptoms to watch for include depression, trouble with sleeping , a false or unusual sense of well-being, mood swings, and personality changes while taking this medicine (2 ) .

Can CBD Be Taken With Prednisone?

Taking CBD along with prednisone could either decrease the effects of cannabidiol or increase the amount of prednisone entering the bloodstream.

Whenever one takes CBD or any medicine, it passes through the digestive system to the liver, where an enzymatic pathway, called the cytochrome P450 (CYP450) family of enzymes, metabolizes or breaks down the substance ingested.

Liver enzymes CYP450 process about 60% of all medications. One of these, CYP3A4, metabolizes prednisone to make it available to the body (3 ) .

Studies have demonstrated that CBD strongly inhibits the activity of CYP3A4 liver enzymes (4 ) .

Meanwhile, prednisone is a weak inducer of CYP3A4 (5 ) . Still, prednisone may increase how quickly the liver breaks down CBD when they are taken in combination.

In particular, the effects of taking CBD along with prednisone could either decrease the effects of cannabidiol or increase the amount of prednisone entering the bloodstream.

The increased prednisone concentration can amplify the drug’s many side effects and raise the risk of severe symptoms, such as dizziness or fainting, blurred vision, irregular or pounding heartbeat, increased thirst or urination, irritability, and unusual tiredness or weakness (6 ) .

Thus, medical experts advise those taking CBD and prednisone to be cautious with this combination (7 ) .

Can CBD Replace Prednisone?

N o study explicitly says CBD can be used in place of prednisone. However, studies have shown that CBD possesses many potential therapeutic benefits that may help with some symptoms or conditions for which prednisone is indicated.

Prednisone is sometimes prescribed for bone marrow problems , which is important for the health of blood cells . Meanwhile, studies have shown that CBD promotes the structural health of bones .

The effect of CBD on bones was also demonstrated by a 2015 study that investigated the properties of cannabidiol concerning bone-related conditions. Data showed that CBD led to an improvement in fracture healing (8 ) .

Like prednisone, CBD can help with skin conditions. A study published in the journal Trends in Pharmacological Sciences has suggested the existence of a functiona l endocannabinoid system (ECS) in the skin and implicated it in various biological processes (9 ) .

CBD impacts the TRPV-1 and GPR55 receptors (10 ) . Both receptors are found in the skin and play a role in pain signaling and inflammation.

CBD has also been shown to help with mood swings, depression, dizziness, and sleeping difficulty, which may be the side effects from taking prednisone.

A study published in the Journal of Psychopharmacology found that CBD may decrease anxiety levels in individuals with a social anxiety disorder (SAD).

Results indicated that, relative to placebo, CBD was associated with significantly decreased subjective anxiety (11 ) .

In another study, results showed that CBD could theoretically induce rapid-acting antidepressant-like effects and enhance neurotransmission (12 ) . Neurotransmission is the process of communication between nerve cells.

In a 2019 study published in The Permanente Journal , sleep and anxiety scores were measured in human subjects, and the findings showed that CBD could hold benefits for anxiety-related disorders (13 ) .

Meanwhile, CBD’s antiemetic properties, which prevent nausea and vomiting, are incredibly helpful.

A 2014 review from the European Journal of Pharmacology established the potential of cannabis to limit or prevent nausea and vomiting from a wide range of causes (14 ) .

More importantly, the powerful anti-inflammatory properties of CBD could help with some of the same disorders that prednisone treats.

CBD’s anti-inflammatory characteristics have been shown in several human and animal studies, like that of a 2014 study published in the Journal of Clinical Investigation and a 2012 research conducted by authors from the Department of Pathology, School of Veterinary Medicine in the University of São Paulo, Brazil (15 ) .

Other studies have demonstrated that the anti-inflammatory and immunosuppressive actions of CBD may be of use in treating rheumatoid arthritis and the associated pain (16 ) .

Meanwhile, research published in the Free Radical Biology & Medicine Journal by George Booz of the University of Mississippi Medical Center showed that CBD, which may interact with the endocannabinoid system, is a promising prototype for anti-inflammatory drug development (17 ) .

Conclusion

CBD “is generally well tolerated with a good safety profile,” the World Health Organization (WHO) states in a critical review (18 ) .

Still, it is not clear how much to take or how often a person should use it for any particular problem.

High doses of CBD may also interact with other medications, such as blood thinners, antidepressants, and immune suppressors (19 ) .

Thus, individuals should be cautious when supplementing their existing medications with CBD.

Do not take other pharmaceuticals unless they have been discussed with a medical professional.

More importantly, before using CBD as a remedy for specific symptoms or conditions, consult with a doctor experienced in cannabis use for advice.

CBD Drug Interactions – Mixing Cannabidiol and Medications

Are you worried about potential CBD-drug interactions? In this article, we explain the mechanism behind drug metabolism and how CBD may interfere with it.

The range of therapeutic properties offered by CBD (cannabidiol) has spurred its popularity in recent years. This natural compound is known to relieve a host of symptoms, allowing for safer and more effective management of different health conditions.

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And unlike THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), CBD is non-intoxicating, so it won’t get you high.

CBD can assist in the treatment of anxiety disorders and depression, inflammation and pain, neurodegeneration, seizure disorders, sleep deprivation, metabolic conditions, neuropathy, migraines, inflammatory bowel disease, and more.

Considering CBD has so many potential health benefits, you may start wondering if it can interact with certain medications used to address the same symptoms — and whether you should or shouldn’t take these drugs with CBD.

Below you’ll find the dos and don’ts of using CBD along with medications.

Let’s start with the don’ts.

What Drugs Should Not Be Taken with CBD

Studies from the Indiana University Department of Medicine have provided a list of pharmaceutical drugs and medications which shouldn’t be taken with CBD.

The list below covers all groups of drugs that can negatively interact with CBD oil.

  • Angiotension II Blockers
  • Antiarrhythmics
  • Antibiotics
  • Antidepressants
  • Anticonvulsants / Anti-Seizure Medications
  • Antihistamines
  • Antipsychotics
  • Anesthetics
  • Beta-Blockers
  • Benzodiazepines
  • Calcium Channel Blockers
  • HIV Antivirals
  • HMG CoA Reductase Inhibitors (Statins)
  • Immune Modulators
  • Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs
  • Oral Hypoglycemic Agents
  • Proton-Pump Inhibitors (PPIs)
  • Prokinetics
  • Steroids and Corticosteroids
  • Sulfonylureas

There’s also a group of drugs called “prodrugs” that first need to be processed into their therapeutic compounds instead of being therapeutic compounds on their own. In plain English, the inactive compound is consumed, and once in the body, it turns into the active compound.

If this mechanism is dependant on the CYP450 system (more on that later), a drug interaction can lead to insufficient concentrations of the therapeutic agent in the bloodstream — reducing its potency.

CBD Interaction with Drugs & Medications

This section covers the most common interactions between CBD and medications. If you take any of the substances listed below, make sure to consult your doctor before buying CBD oil.

CBD and Ibuprofen Interaction

Ibuprofen is one of the Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDs), meaning it can produce similar benefits to CBD in terms of inflammation and pain relief. Previously we’ve mentioned that NSAIDs interact with CBD, which may raise concerns about potential negative interactions between CBD oil and Ibuprofen.

According to a study from the Journal of Neurology Research, there have been no reported interactions between CBD and ibuprofen, although it doesn’t mean they do not exist. Health experts suggest that potential interactions may be dosage-dependent. If a certain dosage threshold is breached, CBD and NSAIDs like Ibuprofen can lead to unforeseen and potentially severe nervous system pathology.

CBD and Adderall Interaction

A 2020 study found that higher doses of medical cannabis led to a decreased use of ADHD medication in adults. Products containing a higher concentration of CBD were linked to lower ADHD scores. This means that CBD can interact with ADHD meds, decreasing their efficacy while providing more pronounced benefits. The potential side effects of interactions between CBD and Adderall may lead to decreased appetite.

CBD and Lamictal Interaction

Using medical cannabis and Lamictal may increase side effects such as dizziness, confusion, drowsiness, and difficulty concentrating. Elderly consumers may also experience impairment in judgment. That being said, none of these side effects were proven to result from CBD use per se. When it comes to interactions between CBD and Lamictal, it can make the medication more or less effective, depending on the dosage.

CBD Oil and Antibiotics

There is no known interaction between CBD and antibiotics, although these interactions may occur if an antibiotic is metabolized through the cytochrome P450 enzyme system. Some studies indicate that taking CBD and antibiotics together may amplify the effects of one another without any negative side effects. However, more research is needed to confirm these findings on a larger scale.

CBD Oil and Omeprazole

CBD can inhibit the enzymes that are targeted by omeprazole and other Proton Pump Inhibitors (PPIs). Taking CBD with certain heartburn medications can increase the risk of diarrhea.

CBD and Thyroid Medications

Some people report mild nausea when taking CBD oil together with their thyroid medications. Since both substances are processed by the CYP450 enzyme system, taking CBD with a thyroid medication may cause hyperthyroidism because more thyroxine would be secreted than the body could metabolize.

CBD and Lisinopril

CBD can temporarily lower blood pressure, so taking it alongside medications like Lisinopril might reduce it even more, making you feel lethargic and weak. Always consult your doctor before adding CBD to your routine if you use anti-hypertension meds.

CBD and Prednisone

Since both CBD and corticosteroids are potent inhibitors of the CYP450 enzyme system, concomitant use may increase the risk of systemic side effects from corticosteroid use due to decreased glucocorticoid clearance. Corticosteroids like prednisolone and hydrocortisone should never be taken with CBD.

How Drugs Interact: Understanding Drug Metabolism

Metabolism can refer to how your body uses energy for weight management, or the way drugs are metabolized in your body.

The former is known as the basal metabolic rate, or in simple terms, the number of calories a person needs to maintain healthy body functions while at rest.

The latter is very different from the basal metabolic rate. Drug metabolism refers to how a substance is processed and used by the body — with the majority of this processing happening in the liver.

Scientists call it the ‘first-pass effect’ or ‘first-pass metabolism.’

Using straightforward terms, when you take a medication, it is broken down in the liver into its active compounds so that the body can use them. Just like carbohydrates are broken down into sugars, fats into triglycerides, and proteins into amino acids — drugs break down into their individual ingredients.

From there, they are controlled by specific enzymes, which transform these compounds into metabolites. These metabolites then influence different processes in your body and are flushed with urine once used up.

How Is CBD Metabolized?

Drug metabolism determines the rate at which the body processes medications and other therapeutic compounds into their individual metabolites and how long they can stay in your system.

When you take CBD in the form of an oil, capsule, or gummy, it has to pass through your gut, where it is released into the bloodstream. From then, they travel through the bloodstream to the liver, where it absorbs through the hepatic portal. The liver breaks CBD down into its metabolites using enzymes, after which it can circulate throughout the body in the bloodstream again.

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What Is the Cytochrome P450 System?

Aside from breaking compounds down into metabolites, the liver also detoxifies and excretes foreign substances and other types of toxic compounds. This can happen through a system of enzymes referred to as the Cytochrome P450 (CYP450). These enzymes contain heme as a cofactor to convert cannabinoids into more water-soluble molecules, increasing their absorption and efficacy.

Researchers estimate that the CYP450 system is responsible for metabolizing 60% of any drugs out there. And interestingly, doctors and pharmacists use this system to understand, evaluate, and predict the benefits of the drug and potential side effects based on their dosages.

However, certain compounds have the ability to compromise the CYP system’s functioning, negatively affecting the metabolism of certain medications. Once these interactions occur, the drugs can be metabolized faster or slower than normal.

CBD And the Cytochrome P450 System

As mentioned earlier, CBD can interact directly with the CYP450 system in the liver. According to preclinical studies, CBD binds to the site where the enzyme activity occurs, competing with other compounds and thus preventing this system from breaking down other substances.

This inhibitory effect on the CYP450 enzymes mainly depends on how much CBD a person takes, their unique physiology, and the type of CBD used (e.g., full-spectrum CBD vs. CBD isolate). The dosage determines the strength used by the CBD to bind to the active site of the metabolic enzymes. The tighter the bond, the more competitive inhibition.

Contraindications for Taking CBD with Medications

The mechanism behind CBD’s health benefits proves that it’s not a biologically inert compound. Instead, the pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics of CBD are complex and similar to any other medication. Therefore, it has the potential to compromise the metabolism of certain medications.

Any therapeutic substance that relies on the CYP450 system can be potentially affected by CBD. A common indicator for such interaction is when your medication has a grapefruit warning on the bottle. However, this is by no means a solid point of reference, and you should always check with your doctor and pharmacist before taking the two compounds together.

Why You Should Always Consult Your Doctor First

The list of drugs that we’ve mentioned above is by no means definite and doesn’t include all the pharmaceutical substances that may interact with CBD. Similarly, not all the medication from these categories will necessarily cause an interaction — as is the case for antibiotics and Ibuprofen.

A consultation with a doctor experienced in CBD and cannabis use can help you establish the right routine for your medications and supplements to avoid potentially negative interactions. Some compounds work synergistically with CBD, so asking your doctor can help you maximize the effect of your treatment.

Not to mention that the doctor can guide you on finding the optimal dosage for yourself.

Key Takeaways on CBD Drug Interactions

The safety profile of CBD has been acknowledged by major health agencies, such as the World Health Organization (WHO), showing that it’s well-tolerated by animals and humans and rarely produces any dangerous side effects.

CBD also has a profound impact on an array of systems, which explains its therapeutic versatility. That being said, this versatility is also the reason why CBD interacts with so many prescription meds and over-the-counter (OTC) PRODUCTS.

Again, if you’re not sure if CBD will interact with the medication that you might be taking, a consultation with a health professional will not harm — unlike trying to figure out these interactions on your own.

Livvy Ashton

Livvy is a registered nurse (RN) and board-certified nurse midwife (CNM) in the state of New Jersey. After giving birth to her newborn daughter, Livvy stepped down from her full-time position at the Children’s Hospital of New Jersey. This gave her the opportunity to spend more time writing articles on all topics related to pregnancy and prenatal care.

Does CBD Oil Interact with Prednisone?

Prednisone is a medication which doctors often prescribe for inflammatory conditions. However, it has limited usefulness due to a range of potential side effects. This has led many patients to seek more natural alternatives, including CBD.

CBD has gained attention in recent years as a potent anti-inflammatory. Furthermore, scientists generally consider CBD to be safe, with a relatively low risk of side effects.

But is it safe to take prednisone and CBD together, or will the two interact and make matters even worse? Here’s all you need to know.

What Is Prednisone?

Prednisone belongs to a drug class known as glucocorticoids. These drugs are sometimes known as corticosteroids, or simply steroids. However, they should not be confused with the anabolic steroids that some athletes use.

How Does Prednisone Help Inflammation?

Prednisone works by mimicking the effects of glucocorticoid hormones that the body naturally produces. The adrenal glands secrete these hormones, and they play a role in various physiological functions. One of these functions is regulating the immune system and the inflammatory response.

Inflammation is a natural and healthy response to injury or infection. It allows the immune system to work more efficiently, enabling it to destroy invading pathogens. As a side effect, this process creates swelling, redness, and pain.

In the short term, this response is helpful as it reminds us to take extra care of ourselves while we heal. However, when inflammation fails to switch off when it should, serious problems can occur.

Chronic inflammation can cause pain, such as arthritis and joint pain. It is also associated with many serious conditions.

Glucocorticoid medications such as prednisone help to turn off inflammation by reducing activity in the immune system. Therefore, they can be used to treat a wide range of different medical conditions.

Some of the conditions for which doctors prescribe prednisone include:

  • Allergies
  • Skin disorders
  • Autoimmune disorders (multiple sclerosis, lupus, etc.)
  • Some types of arthritis

However, although prednisone is a useful medication with many indications, it can also cause some very unpleasant side effects.

Prednisone Side Effects

The side effects of prednisone include:

  • Restlessness
  • Insomnia
  • Dizziness
  • Headaches
  • Sweating
  • Indigestion or heartburn
  • Mood changes
  • Increased risk of infection

When you take it over an extended period, prednisone can also cause more serious issues, including:

  • Weight gain
  • Glucose intolerance
  • High blood pressure
  • Increased risk of osteoporosis
  • Stunted growth in children
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Due to this long list of adverse effects, many people would prefer to replace their prednisone with natural alternatives like CBD. But is CBD effective for inflammation, and is this safe to do? Let’s take a look.

How Does CBD Help with Inflammation?

CBD has become popular in recent years as research highlights its many potential benefits. Probably one of the most well-publicized benefits of CBD oil is its anti-inflammatory effects.

CBD helps inflammation by interacting with the body’s endocannabinoid system (ECS). The ECS is made up of chemicals called endocannabinoids, enzymes, and cell receptors known as cannabinoid receptors.

The two main types of cannabinoid receptor are known as CB1 and CB2. CB1 receptors are mainly associated with the nervous system. CB2 receptors are found throughout the body, but they are concentrated in the immune system.

The ECS has many different functions. It helps to maintain a state of balance within the body, including controlling inflammation, immunity, and pain.

These functions are triggered when endocannabinoids bind to cannabinoid receptors. They fit together, like a lock fits a key to open a door.

Plant cannabinoids like THC have a similar chemical structure to these endocannabinoids. Therefore, they can fit into the same receptors and trigger the same reactions.

CBD is slightly different, though. It does not fit into these receptors directly but alters the way that they bind with other molecules, making them more or less effective.

When you take CBD oil, it influences the way endocannabinoids bind with CB2 receptors in the immune system. This helps to help turn off the inflammatory response.

In this sense, CBD is somewhat similar to prednisone. Both therapies can help to suppress the immune system by interacting with its cells.

However, unlike prednisone, CBD is not known to cause serious side effects. That is not to say that CBD will never cause any side effects at all, though. It’s just that they are unlikely to affect everyone or be especially severe.

Does CBD Interact with Prednisone?

If you suffer from an inflammatory condition and take prednisone, you might be wondering whether you can try CBD too. You might think that CBD is safe since it comes from a plant and causes very few side effects.

But unfortunately, despite its relative safety, CBD does have the potential to interact with other drugs. This means you should be cautious when adding CBD to your existing medication.

When you take CBD (or any medicine), it passes through your digestive system to your liver via the hepatic portal vein. In the liver, an enzymatic pathway called the cytochrome P450 pathway (CYP450) metabolizes CBD.

This process involves several enzymes, including one known as CYP3A4. This is an enzyme which is involved in metabolizing around 25% of all drugs, including CBD and prednisone.

Taking CBD can inhibit the action of CYP3A4. This means that other drugs metabolized by the same enzyme get broken down more slowly. Therefore, CBD can increase the concentration of drugs like prednisone in the body, raising the risk of side effects.

To find out whether your medication interacts with CBD, scientists recommend that you use the ‘grapefruit test.’ Grapefruit and grapefruit juice interact with many of the same drugs that CBD does.

So, if your doctor has told you to avoid grapefruit with your medicine, you should probably avoid CBD, too.

Is It Safe to Take CBD and Prednisone Together?

Since CBD oil can interact with prednisone, making side effects more likely, doctors don’t consider them safe to take together.

Sadly, this is the case for many other medications, too. Although for some people enhancing the effects of their medicine can be helpful, for others, it can be dangerous.

Therefore, if you suffer from an inflammatory condition and want to try CBD, you may need to stop your prednisone first. However, you must do this carefully and under the supervision of your physician.

Here’s what you need to know if you are thinking of making the switch from prednisone to CBD.

Making the Switch from Prednisone to CBD

If you use glucocorticoid medication like prednisone, it is essential that you do not stop taking it suddenly. Stopping this type of medicine without gradually tapering the dose down can result in severe withdrawal symptoms.

Some common prednisone withdrawal symptoms include:

  • Extreme tiredness
  • Joint pain
  • Muscle stiffness
  • Muscle tenderness
  • Fever

Therefore, if you want to stop taking your prednisone and try CBD instead, be very cautious. Talk to your physician first and explain why you want to make the change. Hopefully, they will be understanding and tell you how to stop taking your prednisone safely.

You may need to do this very slowly over the course of several days or weeks, so be patient. If your doctor is knowledgeable about CBD, they should be able to tell you when it is safe to start using it. In the meantime, ask about other ways to manage your symptoms, such as through diet or exercise.

Making the switch from prednisone to CBD is a slow process. However, it is essential to do it properly to avoid suffering even more.

Does CBD Oil Interact with Prednisone? Final Thoughts

CBD oil and prednisone are both useful anti-inflammatory treatments. However, the two substances are metabolized by the same enzyme, meaning that they can easily interact.

CBD can increase the likelihood of experiencing prednisone side effects, which is the exact opposite of what you want. Therefore, you should not take the two together unless your physician explicitly tells you to do so.

If you want to make the switch from prednisone to CBD, you should do so with caution. Suddenly stopping your medication can have unpleasant withdrawal effects, so talk to your doctor about doing this safely.

You may want to look into different ways to relieve your symptoms without medication while you make the transition. By finding ways to manage your condition with some simple lifestyle changes, you could make things much easier for yourself.

And finally, remember that CBD can interact with many drugs besides prednisone. Always consult your healthcare provider before taking CBD with any other medication.

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