Get a Hydrocortisone
Prescription Online

Get a new Hydrocortisone prescription or refill your medication online.

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How much does a visit to get a Hydrocortisone prescription cost?

Physician Visit
One-time visit with a physician for diagnosis, treatment, Rx, labs, referrals, and doctor’s notes.
Copay or $129 without insurance.
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See the first available physician, or schedule a visit with a physician you like.
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Chat with our customer support whenever necessary. They are here for you 24/7.
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Get a doctor’s excuse and/or clearance for your school or work if needed.
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You can request a refund after your visit if we are unable to provide care.
Having a visit does not guarantee a medication will be ordered or refilled. It is clinicians’ professional decision. It is prohibited by law to prescribe or refill controlled substances via virtual visits. Your provider may recommend follow-up care, including additional services that may not be included in visit price.

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What Is Hydrocortisone?

Hydrocortisone is a type of corticosteroid that’s prescribed as a topical cream. It is chiefly used to combat a multitude of skin conditions that cause redness and swelling. The purpose of Hydrocortisone is to reduce inflammation in the afflicted area, which will decrease the signs of redness.

You will find Hydrocortisone under a plethora of brand names, including Cortizone, Corticaine, Hydroskin, and more.

How Does Hydrocortisone Work?

This drug works by suppressing the immune system and decreasing the body’s inflammatory response. Swelling and redness appear on the skin due to the immune system responding to particular conditions. This is a natural defense response, but sometimes it can lead to too much inflammation.

Hydrocortisone is a corticosteroid, which is a special type of medication that targets inflammatory genes. It suppresses these genes and helps them turn off, meaning the immune system no longer triggers an inflammatory response.

Because Hydrocortisone is provided as a topical cream, it will specifically target inflammation when applied to part of your body. Therefore, it reduces inflammation in this particular area, which will calm down many common symptoms associated with inflammatory skin conditions.

What Is Hydrocortisone Used For?

Hydrocortisone is used for multiple symptoms and a selection of skin conditions. Some common skin conditions treated by this medication include:

  • Eczema
  • Dermatitis
  • Allergic rashes
  • Psoriasis
  • Nappy rash
  • Insect bites/stings

When used, Hydrocortisone will specifically target the following symptoms:

  • Redness
  • Swelling
  • Itching

This medication is only for use on your skin so should not be applied orally. Hydrocortisone should also not be used for any facial skin conditions. You may suffer from some of the skin problems mentioned above, but if they affect your face you will need to seek different treatment. Hydrocortisone can have severe side effects when used on your face as the skin is more sensitive. Likewise, you should avoid applying it under your arms unless explicitly directed to by a doctor.

What Are The Side Effects Of Hydrocortisone?

Topical creams or ointments typically cause a wide range of potential side effects when applied to patients. Hydrocortisone is no different, with a handful of common and rare side effects present.

Common side effects are nothing to be concerned about as they usually clear up quickly. These are some of the more mild symptoms to be on the lookout for:

  • Acne growth
  • Mild skin irritation
  • Excess hair growth
  • Changes in skin color
  • Small red bumps on the skin
  • Dry skin

Give your body a chance to adapt to Hydrocortisone when you start using it. If these side effects are still present after a couple of weeks, talk to a doctor. If they keep getting progressively worse, stop using Hydrocortisone.

While very rare, there have been some severe side effects of Hydrocortisone noted:

  • Excessive redness
  • Excessive swelling
  • Skin infections
  • Severe rashes
  • Allergic reactions

You must make a note of these severe side effects as you should speak to a doctor as soon as you notice them. There is a chance you’re suffering a bad reaction to the medication – or you may be applying it incorrectly. Either way, your doctor will explain the next steps so you can reduce these side effects and avoid making them worse.

How to Take Hydrocortisone?

Hydrocortisone is only used externally and you should avoid contact with your mouth or face. You will receive a tube with this cream inside when obtaining your prescription. Your doctor will go over the correct dosage amounts and how frequently you need to apply it to your skin. Pay attention to them and read the informational booklet that comes with your Hydrocortisone to know how much to apply each time.

Applying this medication is relatively simple. You squeeze out the required amount and rub it into the affected area. Keep this area clear so the Hydrocortisone can settle in and be more effective. Avoid covering this area or bandaging it up – unless your doctor tells you to.

When obtaining a Hydrocortisone prescription, you will be told how long to use this medication. Do not exceed the recommended duration as you could end up with mild or severe side effects. At the same time, avoid using Hydrocortisone on healthy skin. It is designed to treat inflammation, so use on healthy skin can trigger side effects.

Improvements in your skin are typically seen within a couple of weeks of regular use. If your symptoms do not abate, speak to your doctor and explain how you are using the medication. They might recommend using Hydrocortisone more frequently or could seek out another medication for you to try instead.

Frequently Asked Questions About Hydrocortisone

Who Should Not Take Hydrocortisone?

Hydrocortisone is not recommended for those who:

  • Who has an infection – Hydrocortisone can suppress the immune response, making it more difficult for the body to fight off an infection.
  • Allergic to it – People who have had an allergic reaction to hydrocortisone or any of its ingredients in the past.
  • Those who suffer from diabetes – Hydrocortisone can affect blood sugar levels, so this medication should be avoided by those who suffer from diabetes.

Those are just some examples and you should consult with a doctor before taking Hydrocortisone.

What Is the Most Common Side Effect of Hydrocortisone?

The most common side effects of topically applied Hydrocortisone are dryness, redness, and irritation of the skin. Other common side effects can include thinning of the skin, changes in skin color, increased hair growth, and acne.

For tablet forms of Hydrocortisone, the most common side effects may include nausea, vomiting, stomach pain, diarrhea, and headaches.

It’s important to be aware of these side effects and contact your doctor if they become severe or persist.

What to Avoid While Taking Hydrocortisone?

While taking Hydrocortisone, you should avoid the following:

  • Other topical steroids such as hydrocortisone acetate, fluocinolone acetonide, and clobetasol propionate.
  • Alcohol – If you take Hydrocortisone tablets, alcohol can increase some of the side effects and it can be burdening on your liver.
  • Live Vaccines: If you are on systemic hydrocortisone, especially at higher doses, you should avoid live vaccines. Hydrocortisone suppresses the immune system, which can make live vaccines riskier or less effective.
  • Certain Medications: Hydrocortisone can interact with a variety of drugs. Inform your doctor about all the medicines you are taking, including prescription drugs, over-the-counter medications, vitamins, and herbal products. Some medications might increase the effects of hydrocortisone, while others may decrease its effectiveness.

The listed things above are just some examples of things you should avoid and there may be more. Be sure to consult with a doctor about any other potential things you should avoid while taking Hydrocortisone.

How Long Does It Take for Hydrocortisone to Work?

When using Hydrocortisone creams or ointments, it usually takes a few hours to start noticing relief from itching and inflammation. Significant improvement may be observed within a few days.

When taken orally, Hydrocortisone takes anywhere from a few hours to a day.

It’s important to note that the effects of Hydrocortisone may be different for everyone and the actual time it takes to start experiencing symptom relief may vary.

It’s important to use Hydrocortisone cautiously and consistently as directed by your doctor to get the best results.

What Is the Typical Dosage for Hydrocortisone?

The typical dosage for Hydrocortisone cream or ointment will vary depending on the condition being treated.

Usually, Hydrocortisone creams contain 1% hydrocortisone and should be applied one to four times a day. For tablets, the usual dose is 20 to 240 milligrams (mg) a day.

The exact dosage should be discussed with your doctor and will vary depending on the condition being treated.

Follow all instructions from your doctor to avoid any potential side effects or complications. Never exceed the recommended dosage without consulting your doctor first. Doing this could cause an increase in side effects or even more serious issues.

Can You Buy Hydrocortisone Over-The-Counter (OTC)?

No, Hydrocortisone is not available over-the-counter in the United States. You will need to visit your doctor and get a prescription from them before you can buy this medication.

Can You Get a Prescription for Hydrocortisone From DrHouse?

Yes, you can obtain a prescription for Hydrocortisone through DrHouse if our licensed medical professionals determine it to be an appropriate course of treatment after a thorough evaluation. This process entails a virtual consultation, during which our healthcare providers will assess your medical condition, discuss symptoms, and decide if Hydrocortisone is suitable for you.

For more detailed information about hydrocortisone, you can refer to the following sources:


The content on this page has been medically reviewed for accuracy and comprehensiveness by Amy Dougherty, FNP-BC, AGAC 

Content on the DrHouse website is written by our medical content team and reviewed by qualified MDs, PhDs, NPs, and PharmDs. We follow strict content creation guidelines to ensure accurate medical information. However, this content is for informational purposes only and not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. For more information read our medical disclaimer.

Always consult with your physician or other qualified health providers about medical concerns. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking it based on what you read on this website.

If you are experiencing high fever (>103F/39.4C), shortness of breath, difficulty breathing, chest pain, heart palpitations, abnormal bruising, abnormal bleeding, extreme fatigue, dizziness, new weakness or paralysis, difficulty with speech, confusion, extreme pain in any body part, or inability to remain hydrated or keep down fluids or feel you may have any other life-threatening condition, please go to the emergency department or call 911 immediately.

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Frequently asked questions

  • Yes, you can get a new prescription or refill an existing one online through DrHouse. You just need to start a consultation with one of our licensed providers and they will be able to assess your needs and provide you with a prescription if necessary.

    Please note that the final decision always rests with the doctor based on their professional judgment and your health needs.

  • There are certain medications that cannot be prescribed online by DrHouse physicians due to safety reasons. These include controlled substances, such as opioids and other narcotics, as well as drugs with a high potential for abuse or dependence. DrHouse physicians also don’t prescribe Gabapentin, medical marijuana, muscle relaxants, and HRT medications.

  • With DrHouse getting a new prescription or a refill for your current Rx is a straightforward and quick process. All you need to do is follow a few easy steps:

    • Download the DrHouse telehealth app on your mobile device.
    • Create an account by providing basic information and medical history.
    • Start an on-demand virtual video consultation with one of our licensed physicians.
    • Discuss your medical needs and concerns with one of our physicians.
    • A doctor will review your medical history, symptoms, and current medications (if any) to determine if an online prescription is appropriate for you.
    • If a physician approves, they will electronically send a new prescription or refill request to the pharmacy of your choice.
    • Pick up your medication from the pharmacy.

    DrHouse makes it easy for you to get an online prescription from the comfort of your own home. No more waiting in line at the doctor’s office or pharmacy, and no need to take time off work to see a doctor. Our telehealth platform allows you to access quality medical care from anywhere with an internet connection.

    For more information about how our telehealth platform works visit our “How DrHouse Works” page.

  • During your virtual consultation with a DrHouse physician, you will have the opportunity to discuss your medical needs and concerns.

    The consultation will consist of a video call where a physician will assess your medical history and ask you questions about your symptoms and any other relevant information. This is to ensure that a physician has all the necessary information to make an informed decision about your prescription.

    You can also ask any questions or clarify any doubts you may have about your condition or medication. Our physicians are happy to address any concerns you may have.

    Once a physician has assessed your needs, they will determine if and what type of prescription is appropriate for you. If a new prescription or refill is approved, a doctor will send it electronically to your chosen pharmacy.

  • With our on-demand telehealth service, you have the opportunity to see the first available doctor in as little as 10 to 15 minutes. However, the exact consult time will depend on the complexity of your case and the thoroughness required by the healthcare provider to make an informed decision.

  • Absolutely, it is safe to get an online prescription from DrHouse. We are committed to ensuring the highest standards of patient safety and privacy.

    All our providers are highly qualified US-based physicians and often affiliated with major hospitals. They are board-certified and from the top U.S. medical schools with an average of 20 years of experience.

    We strictly adhere to HIPAA regulations, ensuring your personal and medical information is kept secure and confidential. Also, we comply with all applicable state and federal laws related to telehealth and the prescribing of medications.

    Therefore, you can rest assured knowing that your safety and privacy are our top priorities when you use DrHouse’s services.

  • DrHouse strives to provide accessible and affordable telehealth services. DrHouse urgent care, primary care, and specialist visits are $129 or your copay. This includes everything from your initial consultation through to the prescription of your medication.

    The cost of a doctor’s visit may be covered fully by your insurance. A typical copay is around $25. We recommend checking with your insurance provider to understand the extent of your coverage for telehealth services.

    To learn more about how much DrHouse costs, visit our pricing page

  • Yes, DrHouse accepts most major insurances, including Blue Cross Blue Shield, Aetna, and Medicare. The extent of coverage may vary depending on your individual plan.

  • Our physicians are able to prescribe up to a 90-day prescription without labs for any previously prescribed medication if it’s medically appropriate and is not classified as a controlled substance.

    DrHouse physicians also don’t prescribe Gabapentin, medical marijuana, muscle relaxants, and HRT medications.

    DrHouse physicians use their medical judgment to determine whether to prescribe and the duration.

    In certain cases, the prescription may be limited to 30 days or less. There also may be a 12-month cap for some prescriptions without labs. For medications requiring annual monitoring (such as blood work or imaging), the maximum prescription limit is 90 days within a year without labs.

    DrHouse physicians can refer patients to labs for longer prescription periods or refills.