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Corticosteroids, more often known as steroids, are an anti-inflammatory medicine prescribed for a wide range of conditions.
What corticosteroids are used for
Corticosteroids are used to reduce inflammation, to treat autoimmune conditions and to replace naturally occurring hormones.
Who can use corticosteroids
Due to their strength, restrictions about who can safely take oral corticosteroids are tighter than those for other types of corticosteroid.
How corticosteroids work
Corticosteroids work by blocking the effects of some of the chemicals that the immune system uses to ‘kick-start’ the process of inflammation
Medicines that interact with corticosteroids
Corticosteroid tablets can interact with other medicines. There is less chance of interaction with corticosteroid injections or sprays, although they can occasionally occur.
Dosage of corticosteroids
Because of the risk of side effects, your GP will prescribe the lowest possible dose of corticosteroids that is thought to control your symptoms.
Side effects of corticosteroids
As corticosteroids are hormones, they can have a wide range of side effects.