Hydrocortisone general information
What is hydrocortisone used for?
Hydrocortisone 20mg tablets are used to treat several conditions where inflammation or allergic reaction causes health problems. For example, severe allergies, arthritis, asthma, multiple sclerosis, and skin conditions. Hydrocortisone 20mg tablets are also used to replace a lack of production of natural hormone which happens in some diseases like Addisons disease.
How does hydrocortisone work?
Hydrocortisone 20mg tablets contain hydrocortisone which is a synthetic corticosteroid hormone with actions similar to cortisol, also known as the “stress” hormone that is produced by the adrenal glands. Hydrocortisone works by reducing the body’s response to inflammation in several different tissues and also alters the body's response to immune stimulation. These actions inhibit the clinical manifestations of disease in a wide range of disorders, such as severe allergies, arthritis, asthma, multiple sclerosis, and allergic or inflammatory skin conditions.
What does hydrocortisone contain?
Hydrocortisone 20mg tablets contain hydrocortisone, a synthetic corticosteroid hormone with actions similar to cortisol produced by the adrenal glands that is used to treat various conditions related to allergy and inflammation. They also contain lactose, maize cornflour, talc, magnesium stearate and polyvinylpyrrolidinone.
Treating asthma with hydrocortisone
Hydrocortisone 20mg tablets can be used to treat severe asthma to control symptoms of breathlessness and wheezing where symptoms cannot be controlled by other medications, and usually for only a short time.
What are the side effects of hydrocortisone?
The most commonly reported side effects when using Hydrocortisone 20mg tablets include: altered vision; frequent urination, increased thirst, muscle or bone aches and pains, mood changes, restlessness, sleep disturbances, weight gain, thinning of skin, acne, stomach upset.
What are the health risks of taking hydrocortisone?
Long term use of Hydrocortisone 20mg tablets may cause the adrenal glands, which produce endogenous (naturally occurring) corticosteroids, to stop working efficiently. This may slow down the growth rate in children and will need regular monitoring. Hydrocortisone 20mg tablets may also cause decreased bone mineral density, if used for long periods. Long term use of steroids may be associated with a range of side effects such as; round face, altered body shape, altered hair growth, thinning of the bones, decreased resistance to infection, increased blood pressure and diabetes.
When should hydrocortisone not be used?
You should not use Hydrocortisone 20mg tablets if you:
- are allergic to hydrocortisone or any of the ingredients in Hydrocortisone 20mg tablets
- have thyroid, stomach, heart, kidney or liver problems, high blood pressure, mood disorders, epilepsy, diabetes, glaucoma, osteoporosis
- have any infectious disease or tuberculosis
- are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or breast-feeding
- are due to receive a vaccination with a live virus vaccine
- are taking medicines that may interact with hydrocortisone like anti-inflammatories such as; diclofenac, ibuprofen, mefenamic acidor naproxen; barbiturates, phenylbutazone, phenytoin or rifampicin, anticoagulants
- are taking diuretic medicines such as the thiazides or frusemide, these may cause increased loss of potassium when taken with Hydrocortisone 20mg tablets
How should hydrocortisone be taken?
The dose of Hydrocortisone 20mg tablets that you take, how often and for how long depends on what you are being treated for and as recommended by your doctor. You should take the prescribed dose with a glass of water with food. You should not stop taking Hydrocortisone 20mg tablets suddenly; withdrawal should be gradual to reduce risk of side effects.
How long should you take hydrocortisone?
You should take Hydrocortisone 20mg tablets for as long as recommended by your doctor, which may be for a few days or weeks. You should not stop taking Hydrocortisone 20mg tablets suddenly; withdrawal should be gradual to reduce risk of side effects.
Missed dose of hydrocortisone
If you miss a dose of Hydrocortisone 20mg tablets take it as soon as you remember, unless it is time to take the next dose, then skip the missed dose. Do not take a double dose.
How should hydrocortisone be stored?
You should store your Hydrocortisone 20mg tablets at room temperature below 30°C and protect from light and moisture