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- Short-acting steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (corticosteroid)
- Symptomatic treatment of severe allergic and inflammatory reactions, when oral administration is not possible
Forms and strengths, route of administration
- Powder for injection, 100 mg hydrocortisone (hemisuccinate, succinate or phosphate) in vial, to be dissolved in 2 ml water for injection, for IM or slow IV injection or infusion
Dosage and duration
- Child one month to 11 years: 4 mg/kg (max. 100 mg)
- Child 12 years and over and adult: 100 to 200 mg
Doses may be repeated at 6 or 8 hour-intervals up to 3 or 4 times according to reaction severity and clinical response. Change to oral route with prednisolone as soon as possible.
Contra-indications, adverse effects, precautions
- In case of systemic infection, only administer if patient is under antimicrobial treatment.
- Avoid prolonged administration in patients with peptic ulcer, diabetes mellitus or cirrhosis.
- May cause (if prolonged treatment with high doses): adrenal suppression, muscle atrophy, growth retardation, increased susceptibility to infections, sodium and water retention (oedema and hypertension), osteoporosis, hypokalaemia, digitalis toxicity due to potassium loss in patients taking digitalis glycosides.
- Pregnancy: no contra-indication
- Breast-feeding: no contra-indication
- 20 mg of hydrocortisone has the same anti-inflammatory activity as 5 mg of prednisolone or prednisone and 0.75 mg of dexamethasone.
- Hydrocortisone acetate is a suspension insoluble in water, used as a local treatment only: intra- or periarticular injection, epidural (sciatic neuralgia).
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