I haven’t been writing lately but your story is so similar to my own. I am still on prednisone (4 mg) and have tried often to ween off of it, but can’t. When I tried to go down to 3 mg, the pain came back with a vengence! I also take tramadol twice a day and am told I can use 3 times a day but don’t. I also have gained so much weight and was overweight before I took it. When I try to lose some of the weight nothing works. I have other things going on also — arthritis in my knees, neuropothy in my legs and feet and lymphedema. Because of all this I can’t manage getting in and out of any car and am now home bound. I am so depressed also but keep on keeping on!