Topical corticosteroids: Nursing Pharmacology
|DRUG NAME||hydrocortisone 0.5–2.5% (Ala-Cort, Ala-Scalp, Anusol HC Cetacort, Procort, Cortizone-5, Cortizone-10, Procort, Texacort)||triamcinolone 0.025–0.1% (Kenalog, Triderm);|
betamethasone 0.1% (Beta-Val, Dermabet, Luxiq, Valnac)
|betamethasone 0.05% (Diprolene, Diprolene AF, Sernivo);|
clobetasol 0.05% (Clobex, Cormax, Olux, Olux-E, Temovate, Temovate-E)
|CLASS||Low potency topical corticosteroids||Intermediate potency topical corticosteroids||High potency topical corticosteroids|
|MECHANISM OF ACTION|
|ROUTE(S) OF ADMINISTRATION|
|CONTRAINDICATIONS AND CAUTIONS|
|NURSING CONSIDERATIONS: TOPICAL CORTICOSTEROIDS|
|ASSESSMENT AND MONITORING||All topical corticosteroids|
|CLIENT EDUCATION||All topical corticosteroids|
Topical corticosteroids are a group of medications used in the treatment of various skin conditions, such as psoriasis, eczematous rashes, lichen sclerosis, bullous pemphigoid, pemphigus foliaceous, and urticaria. They work by suppressing the inflammatory response, thus reducing inflammation and itching in the affected area.
Common topical corticosteroids include hydrocortisone, triamcinolone, and betamethasone clobetasol. Some side effects of topical corticosteroids include skin irritation, dryness, and redness. Long-term can also cause thinning of the skin, stretch marks, and increased risk of infections.
While caring for a client on a topical corticosteroid, nursing considerations include applying the medication to intact skin using a clean technique, as well as monitoring for side effects such as the development of infection or irritation at the application site. Client teaching is focused on how to apply the medication as directed and to report symptoms of systemic absorption or if the affected area does not respond to treatment.
- "Basic and Clinical Pharmacology 12/E" McGraw Hill Professional (2012)
- "Saunders Comprehensive Review for the NCLEX-RN Examination" Saunders (2016)
- "Topical corticosteroids in dermatology" Indian Journal of Dermatology, Venereology, and Leprology (2016)
- "Mosby's 2021 Nursing Drug Reference" Mosby (2020)
- "Comparison of representative topical corticosteroid preparations (classified according to the United States system)" UpToDate (2021)
- "Topical corticosteroids: Use and adverse effects" UpToDate (2021)
- "Choosing Topical Corticosteroids" American Family Physician (2009)