Acne is often present. Acne conglobata is a particularly severe form of acne that can develop during steroid abuse or even after the drug has been discontinued. Infections are a common side effect of steroid abuse because of needle sharing and unsanitary techniques used when injecting the drugs into the skin. These are similar risks to IV drug abusers with increased potential to acquire blood-borne infections such as hepatitis and HIV/AIDS . Skin abscesses may occur at injection sites and may spread to other organs of the body. Endocarditis or an infection of the heart valves is not uncommon.
Lynne, many years ago I suddenly developed intense pain in one of my fingers and a short while afterwards a swelling appeared on the joint, following which the pain disappeared. Over the following months/years, I had exactly the same experience in other fingers, with the resultant lumps being diagnosed as Heberden's Nodes. Look it up. At around the same time, I developed repetitive strain injury in the base of both thumbs which was so very painful, leading to a few periods of time off work as I couldn't lift even a cup and saucer at one stage, let alone type! After several visits to different doctors, a rheumatologist arranged for made-to-measure plastercast supports for each thumb - they worked a treat. If you do actually have Heberden's Nodes, it might reassure you to know that the pain does improve and even disappear, even if sometimes, especially in winter, they stiffen somewhat.