The adrenal glands which lie just above the kidney produce steroid hormones. Corticosteroids are medications which act in the same way as steroid hormones. Certain corticosteroids such as hydrocortisone are used to replace the body’s production when the adrenal glands are not working normally.
Corticosteroids such as prednisolone can also be used to reduce inflammation (signs include warmth, redness, swelling and pain) or calm an overactive immune system. Therefore, steroids can help to reduce swelling, redness, itchiness and allergic reactions. They are used in different conditions such as severe allergies, skin problems, asthma, arthritis (joint inflammation) and autoimmune diseases (where the immune system attacks the body).
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