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Hydrocortisone is a naturally occurring glucocorticoid (adrenal corticosteroid), similar to its acetate and sodium hemisuccinate derivatives, is partially absorbed following rectal administration. Absorption studies in ulcerative colitis patients have shown up to 50% absorption of hydrocortisone administered as CORTENEMA* and up to 30% of hydrocortisone acetate administered in an identical vehicle. CORTENEMA* provides the potent anti-inflammatory effect of hydrocortisone. Because this drug is absorbed from the colon, it acts both topically and systemically. Although rectal hydrocortisone, used as recommended for CORTENEMA (hydrocortisone) * has a low incidence of reported adverse reactions, prolonged use presumably may cause systemic reactions associated with oral dosage forms.

Last reviewed on RxList: 3/12/2008
This monograph has been modified to include the generic and brand name in many instances.

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