American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine vol:153 issue:2 pages:769-75
Treatment with the fluorinated steroid triamcinolone (TR) induced type IIb fiber atrophy and the contractile profile of a slow muscle in rat diaphragm. In contrast, the nonfluorinated steroid prednisolone (PR) caused myogenic changes without fiber atrophy, and increased fatigability. The aim of the present study was to investigate the extent to which these changes were reversed 2 mo after discontinuation of treatment. Adult rats were randomly assigned to receive saline, PR 1.25 or 5 mg/kg, or TR 0.25, 0.5, or 1 mg/kg, intramuscularly daily during 4 wk. Administration of TR resulted in severe loss of body weight and dose-dependent mortality. During recovery, body weight in the TR groups increased gradually, still remaining reduced compared with the other groups. Two months after discontinuation of treatment, diaphragm weight was increased in proportion to body weight. Twitch characteristics, maximal tetanic force, force-frequency curve, and fatigue resistance of isolated diaphragm bundles were similar in all groups. Histologic examination of the diaphragm revealed no gross abnormalities in the PR and TR groups. Mild but significant type IIb fiber atrophy was still present in the diaphragm and gastrocnemius muscle of all TR-treated animals. In conclusion, recovery of alterations in morphology of respiratory and peripheral skeletal muscles induced by administration of TR is prolonged.