GENERIC NAME: hydrocortisone, oral
BRAND NAMES: A-Hydrocort, Solu-CORTEE, Cortef
DISCONTINUED BRAND: Hydrocortone
DRUG CLASS AND MECHANISM: Hydrocortisone is a naturally-occurring corticosteroid produced by the adrenal glands. Corticosteroids have potent anti-inflammatory properties and are used in a wide variety of inflammatory conditions such as:
- certain skin rashes, and
- allergic or inflammatory conditions of the nose and eyes.
There are numerous preparations of corticosteroids including oral tablets, capsules, liquids, topical creams and gels, inhalers and eye drops, and injectable and intravenous solutions. Hydrocortisone that is prescribed in oral, tablet and liquid forms is addressed in this article.
Dosage requirements of corticosteroids vary among individuals and the diseases being treated. In general, the lowest possible effective dose is used. Corticosteroids given in multiple doses throughout the day are more effective but also more toxic than if the same total dose is given once daily or every other day. The FDA approved hydrocortisone in December 1952.
PRESCRIBED FOR: Hydrocortisone is used to achieve prompt suppression of inflammation in many inflammatory and allergic conditions. Examples of such inflammatory conditions include:
- rheumatoid arthritis,
- systemic lupus,
- acute gouty arthritis,
- psoriatic arthritis,
- ulcerative colitis, and
- Crohn's disease.
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