Skin & lifestyle
Hydrocortisone is an adrenal cortex hormone (corticosteroid). It helps prevent inflammatory and hypersensitive reactions in the body. It also plays a role in the body’s salt and water balance. Hydrocortisone is often prescribed for various skin conditions, including eczema.
Medically reviewed by G.L. Merkens on December 17, 2018
Hydrocortisone is a corticosteroid or adrenal cortex hormone. Our body also makes this compound in the adrenal cortex. People with adrenal disorders, such as Addison's disease and androgenital syndrome, need hydrocortisone medication.
Hydrocortisone cream can also be used on the skin for certain skin conditions, such as itching due to eczema or a rash, and can also reduce redness and itching.
In addition, hydrocortisone can be prescribed for people with inflammatory diseases of the respiratory system such as asthma and COPD, as well as for people with severe allergic reactions.
Hydrocortisone helps to store and release energy, salts and minerals. It also helps prevent hypersensitivity and inflammatory reactions.
Hydrocortisone cream’s anti-inflammatory effect works by narrowing blood vessels. It reduces itching, scaling and swelling of the skin, and thus is also prescribed for eczema.
Hydrocortisone cream should usually be applied to the irritated area twice a day in a thin layer. If your doctor prescribes it in a tablet or capsule form, it should be taken with water, usually three times a day.
In some emergency situations, a cortisone injection may be necessary. This applies, for example, to patients with airway inflammations or serious allergic reactions.
It is not possible to obtain hydrocortisone cream prescription-free. This also applies to Hydrocortisone tablets.