Hydrocortisone is classed as a mild topical corticosteroid. Topical corticosteroids are also referred to as topical steroids . Topical steroids are used in addition to moisturisers (emollients) for treating inflammatory skin conditions such as eczema and dermatitis . A topical steroid can be used to relieve the symptoms when patches of eczema or dermatitis flare up. Hydrocortisone is also useful in reducing inflammation due insect bites and stings . A doctor may also prescribe hydrocortisone to treat nappy rash in a baby or infant.
It is important to use the correct amount of topical steroid for your eczema, as instructed by your healthcare professional. Topical steroids should be applied with clean hands so that the skin just glistens. It can sometimes be difficult to judge how much steroid to use and there are guidelines on the amount required to cover body areas that are affected by eczema. These are based on the Finger Tip Unit (FTU), and explained in detail in our fact sheet which you can download as a pdf from the related documents to the right of this page.
This report is another study that demonstrates the success of topical steroid therapy in an effort to avoid circumcision under anesthesia in older children. This article is an important contribution, as it is a report from a North American institution, where the threshold to proceed to circumcision has historically been lower than other countries, where the parent's desire to avoid late circumcision could potentially overstate the outcome or benefits of the topical steroid therapy. This therapy could also be applied to other foreskin problems such as persistent penile adhesions with similar expected results.