Aeroseb-HC, Alphaderm, Cetacort, Cortaid, Cort-Dome, Cortenema, Cortril, Dermacort, Dermolate, Hydrocortone, Hytone, Proctocort, Rectocort , Synacort

Anusol HC, CaldeCort, Carmol HC, Colifoam, Cortaid, Cortamed, Cort-Dome, Cortef Acetate, Corticaine, Cortifoam, Cortiment , Epifoam, Hydrocortone Acetate

Cortef Fluid

Hydrocortone Phosphate

A-Hydrocort, Solu-Cortef

skin and mucous membrane agent; antiinflammatory; synthetic hormone; adrenal corticosteroids; glucocorticoid; mineralocorticoid
Pregnancy Category: C


Assessment & Drug Effects

  • Establish baseline and continuing data on BP, weight, fluid and electrolyte balance, and blood glucose.
  • Lab tests: Periodic serum electrolytes blood glucose, Hct and Hgb, platelet count, and WBC with differential.
  • Monitor for adverse effects. Older adults and patients with low serum albumin are especially susceptible to adverse effects.
  • Be alert to signs of hypocalcemia (see Appendix F).
  • Ophthalmoscopic examinations are recommended every 2–3 mo, especially if patient is receiving ophthalmic steroid therapy.
  • Monitor for persistent backache or chest pain; compression and spontaneous fractures of long bones and vertebrae present hazards.
  • Monitor for and report changes in mood and behavior, emotional instability, or psychomotor activity, especially with long-term therapy.
  • Be alert to possibility of masked infection and delayed healing (antiinflammatory and immunosuppressive actions).
  • Note: Dose adjustment may be required if patient is subjected to severe stress (serious infection, surgery, or injury).
  • Note: Single doses of corticosteroids or use for a short period (<1 wk) do not produce withdrawal symptoms when discontinued, even with moderately large doses.

Patient & Family Education

  • Expect a slight weight gain with improved appetite. After dosage is stabilized, notify physician of a sudden slow but steady weight increase [2 kg (5 lb)/wk].
  • Avoid alcohol and caffeine; may contribute to steroid-ulcer development in long-term therapy.
  • Do not ignore dyspepsia with hyperacidity. Report symptoms to physician and do NOT self-medicate to find relief.
  • Do NOT use aspirin or other OTC drugs unless prescribed specifically by the physician.
  • Note: A high protein, calcium, and vitamin D diet is advisable to reduce risk of corticosteroid-induced osteoporosis.
  • Notify physician of slow healing, any vague feeling of being sick, or return to pretreatment symptoms.
  • Do not abruptly discontinue drug; doses are gradually reduced to prevent withdrawal symptoms.
  • Report exacerbation of disease during drug withdrawal.
  • Carry medical identification at all times. It needs to indicate medical diagnosis, drug therapy, and name of physician.
  • Apply topical preparations sparingly in small children. The hazard of systemic toxicity is higher because of the greater ratio of skin surface area to body weight.
  • Check shelf-life date on topical corticosterone during long-term use.
  • Do not breast feed while taking/using this drug without consulting physician.

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