A person's prescribed dosage of dexamethasone will be based on several factors, such as the type and severity of the condition being treated and the particular product that will be used. In many cases, the amount of dexamethasone will also be slowly reduced as the condition improves. This drug is given on a short-term basis and is tapered gradually to reduce harmful side effects.
An Introduction to Your Dose of DexamethasoneThe dosage of dexamethasone your healthcare provider recommends will vary, depending on a number of factors, including:
- The particular dexamethasone product
- Your age
- Your weight (in children)
- The type and severity of the condition being treated
- How you respond to the medication
- Other medications you may be taking
- Other medical conditions you may have.
As is always the case, do not adjust your dosage unless your healthcare provider specifically tells you to do so.
Dexamethasone Oral Dosing GuidelinesThe standard dosage of dexamethasone can vary significantly from person to person. The usual initial dosage in adults is 0.75 mg to 9 mg a day. However, lower or higher amounts may be used. For example, daily doses can be as high as 30 mg a day when treating multiple sclerosis. There is no well-established maximum dexamethasone dosage.
The usual initial dosage in children, based on weight, is dexamethasone 0.02 mg to 0.3 mg per kg per day, divided into three or four doses. As with adults, lower or higher amounts may be used if a healthcare provider determines they are needed.
In general, most people take dexamethasone for a short time to avoid long-term side effects. If long-term treatment is necessary, your healthcare provider will find the lowest effective dose to treat your condition. This will be your maintenance dosage.
Your maintenance dosage will likely need periodic adjustment, as your condition improves or worsens. Most people need higher amounts of dexamethasone in times of stress, such as during injury, infection, or emotional distress.
If dexamethasone has been used for longer than a few weeks, it should not be stopped suddenly. Instead, your healthcare provider will recommend a gradual dose reduction when it is time for you to stop taking it.