It has been a number of years since I had polymyalgia rheumatica - no fun, that's for sure. At that time the doctor first tried Motrin - then I was told that Prednisone was the only thing - it did help but as you say the side effects are miserable - it took about a year for me to overcome this muscle disease. The doctor also advised me to take a nap (sleep!) everyday - and to avoid walks and other exercise. At that time also, it was unknown what causes this disease. I wish you well.