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What Are Corticosteroids?
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What method of administration is used for treating asthma or allergies with corticosteroids?
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Hello, I'm Dr. Robert Fenell, founder of HandAndFootClinicsOfAmerica.com, and I'm here today on behalf of About.com, to share with you what corticosteroids are.

Corticosteroids Mimic Cortisol

Cortisol is a natural hormone that is produced and secreted from the adrenal glands, which are located just above the kidneys on both sides of the body. Corticosteroids are synthetic medications that are produced almost as a clone to cortisol, and are used in prescription dosages for various conditions and inflammatory responses.

Many Types of Corticosteroids

There are many different types of corticosteroids available on the market today. They are generally used to treat conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, asthma, allergies, skin rashes and conditions, and other inflammatory responses in the body. There are also known side effects to taking corticosteroid medications. Be certain to discuss with your primary care physician about the possible and potential side effects that they can have on your health.

How to Administer Corticosteroids

Corticosteroids can be administered in four different ways: by mouth, usually in pill form, for systemic illnesses such as rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, and other systemic problems; by inhalation, for asthma and allergies; by topical use, for skin rashes and inflammatory conditions of the skin; and also by injection for tendonitis and other musculoskeletal inflammatory responses. Corticosteroids can be a patient's best friend when it comes to alleviating the symptoms, swelling, and inflammation associated with many different illnesses. However, on the flip side, corticosteroids can also pose serious side effects and health concerns. Having a good working knowledge of the medication you are taking is a great idea.

I'd like to thank you for watching this video today. If you would like to learn more or find more information, visit us online at About.com.
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