Hydrocortisone is primarily prescribed for managing of adrenocortical insufficiency; relief of inflammation of corticosteroid-responsive dermatoses (low and medium potency topical corticosteroid); adjunctive treatment of ulcerative colitis.
Hydrocortisone effectively helps in the treatment of serious allergies, multiple sclerosis, asthma, and arthritis as well as some types of skin conditions. It acts as a corticosteroid, and prevents body tissues from reacting to inflammation.
Hydrocortisone is an oral drug, and can be taken either with food or without. Patients who are more likely to develop stomach problems should take the drug along with food. This drug should always be gradually stopped. If it is discontinued suddenly, its side effects may worsen resulting in seizures.
One of the side effects of the drug is dizziness. In this case alcohol consumption should be limited or avoided entirely, otherwise dizziness may become more severe. Driving and more complicated tasks should also be avoided in order to prevent accidents.
The drug also lowers the immunity of the body, which is precisely why patients taking Hydrocortisone should avoid contact with those who have infections like the cold or flu. If the drug is used for a long period of time, it can result in the onset of eye problems like cataract, eye infections as well glaucoma. Other side effects of the drug include dry scalp, acne and redness of the face.
Symptoms of overdose include cushingoid appearance (systemic), muscle weakness (systemic), osteoporosis (systemic) all with long-term use only. When consumed in excessive quantities for prolonged periods, systemic hypercorticism and adrenal suppression may occur.
In those cases, discontinuation and withdrawal of the corticosteroid should be done judiciously. Take as directed; do not increase doses and do not stop abruptly without consulting prescribed.
Dosage of systemic hydrocortisone is usually tapered off gradually. Take oral dose with food to reduce GI upset. Hydrocortisone may cause immunosuppression and mask symptoms of infection; avoid exposure to contagion and notify prescriber of any signs of infection (eg, fever, chills, sore throat, injury) and notify dentist or surgeon (if necessary) that you are taking this medication.
You may experience increased appetite, indigestion, or increased nervousness. Report any sudden weight gain (>5 lb/week), swelling of extremities or difficulty breathing, abdominal pain, severe vomiting, black or tarry stools, fatigue, anorexia, weakness, or unusual mood swings.
The medicine is useful against the following conditions:
Is It safe with alcohol?Interaction with alcohol is unknown. Please consult your doctor.
Are there any pregnancy warnings?Hydrocortisone may be unsafe to use during pregnancy.
Animal studies have shown adverse effects on the foetus, however, there are limited human studies. The benefits from use in pregnant women may be acceptable despite the risk. Please consult your doctor.
Are there any breast-feeding warnings?Hydrocortisone is probably safe to use during breastfeeding. Please consult your doctor.
Is it safe to drive while on this medicine?There is no interaction between driving and consuming this drug. So dose alteration is not needed.
Does this affect kidney function?Caution should be used in patients with impaired renal function.
Does this affect liver function?There is no data available. Please consult doctor before consuming the drug.
Are there any overdose instructions?Seek emergency medical treatment or contact the doctor in case of an overdose.
Are there any missed dose instructions?If you miss a dose of this medicine, take it as soon as possible. However, if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular schedule. Do not double the dose.
Below is the list of medicines, which contains Hydrocortisone as ingredient
This medication acts as a corticosteroid used for reducing skin inflammation. Your body releases different chemicals in response to certain triggers. It works by stopping the infection-fighting white blood cells from reaching the part of your body which is prone to infections.
Whenever you take more than one medicine, or mix it with certain foods or beverages, you"re at risk of a drug interaction.
Interaction with Medicine
- Insulin decreases hypoglycemic effect.
- Phenytoin, phenobarbital, ephedrine, and rifampin increase metabolism of hydrocortisone and decrease steroid blood level.
- Increased toxicity:
- Oral anticoagulants change prothrombin time; potassium-depleting diuretics increase risk of hypokalemia.
- Cardiac glucosides increase risk of arrhythmias or digitalis toxicity secondary to hypokalemia.
Interaction with Food
Interaction with Disease
- Use with caution in patients with hyperthyroidism, cirrhosis, nonspecific ulcerative colitis, hypertension, osteoporosis, thromboembolic tendencies, CHF, convulsive disorders, myasthenia gravis, thrombophlebitis, peptic ulcer, diabetes.
- Acute adrenal insufficiency may occur with abrupt withdrawal after long-term therapy or with stress; young pediatric patients may be more susceptible to adrenal axis suppression from topical therapy.
- Because of the risk of adverse effects, systemic corticosteroids should be used cautiously in the elderly, in the smallest possible dose, and for the shortest possible time.
Ques: How does Hydrocortisone work?
Ques: Is Hydrocortisone a steroid?
Ques: What is Hydrocortisone used for?
Ques: How is Hydrocortisone administered?
Ques: I was given Hydrocortisone in the knee as I have arthritis. Will it pain after taking Hydrocortisone? What should I do about it?
Lybrate is a medium to provide our audience with the common information on medicines and does not guarantee its accuracy or exhaustiveness. Even if there is no mention of a warning for any drug or combination, it never means that we are claiming that the drug or combination is safe for consumption without any proper consultation with an expert.
Lybrate does not take responsibility for any aspect of medicines or treatments. If you have any doubts about your medication, we strongly recommend you to see a doctor immediately.