Corticosteroids Definition

Corticosteroids are a grouping of man-made drugs that closely resemble the hormone cortisol, which is produced naturally by the body. They work as powerful anti-inflammatory drugs that reduce the activity of the immune system to help minimize damage to the tissues.

Corticosteroids have various routes of administration, as they can be given orally, injected into a vein, muscle, or directly into the inflamed joint, and applied topically to the skin. Prednisone is the steroid most commonly used in the treatment of arthritis and other rheumatic diseases.