CortisolType: Corticosteroid

Active ingredient: Hydrocortisone

Common use: Cortisol is a steroid hormone produced in the human body. It is released naturally as a response to stress and low blood-glucose concentration. Cortisol increases blood sugar through gluconeogenesis, suppresses the immune system, decreases bone formation, and aids in the metabolism of fats, proteins and carbohydrates.

When cortisol is used as a medication, it is called Hydrocortisone. Hydrocortisone is available as intravenous injection, as topical application and for oral administration.

Examples of situations where Hydrocortisone is used:

  • Hydrocortisone is injected to treat severe allergic reactions, including anaphylaxis and angioedema.
  • Hydrocortisone is used as an alternative to Prednisolone in patients needing steroid treatment.
  • Hydrocortisone is used perioperatively to prevent Addisonian crisis in patients on long-term steroid treatment.
  • Hydrocortisone is injected into inflamed joints, e.g. to treat gout.
  • Hydrocortisone is used topically to treat eczema, psoriasis, allergic rashes, general itchiness and inflammatory skin conditions. Topical hydrocortisone creams and ointments can usually be purchased without prescription as long as the concentration of Hydrocortisone is 2.5% or lower.

How to use: Hydrocortisone is used for a wide range of conditions and is available as intravenous injection, as oral medication and in topical creams and ointments. How to use Hydrocortisone depends on your condition. Always follow the instructions from your doctor.

How to store: How to store hydrocortisone depends on the product type (intravenous injection, topical application, etc). Follow the instructions from the manufacturer.

Warnings: The potential side-effects of Hydrocortisone varies greatly depending on which type of treatment your have been prescribed, how the Hydrocortisone is being administered and for how long. Discuss warnings and side-effects with your doctor, and always read the medicine label and the informational leaflet that comes with the medicine.