Compare Prednisone vs. Hydrocortisone

Head-to-head comparisons of medication uses, side effects, ratings, and more.

Deltasone
(prednisone)

Anusol Hc
(hydrocortisone)

Calms down your immune system. Deltasone (Prednisone) is a common oral corticosteroid that's great for controlling the unwanted symptoms from your immune responses and will make you feel better. There are lots of side effects but most of are tolerable or can be managed.Treats itchy or irritated skin. Anusol Hc (Hydrocortisone) is a good topical steroid to try for treating minor rashes or skin irritation.
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Coupons for Prednisone
Best available price for 10 (20mg) tablets of prednisone
Coupons for Hydrocortisone
Best available price for 1 (454g of 2.5%) jar of ointment of hydrocortisone
Reviews & ratings
Filter group. All currently selected
Filter group. All currently selected
4.8Prednisone
Reviews for Deltasone (prednisone)
59%
of people (All ages) say Deltasone (prednisone) is worth it
45%
say it works well
20%
say it's a big hassle
540 reviews
Have you used Deltasone (prednisone)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
Reviews for Anusol Hc (hydrocortisone)
Not enough review data. Review it!
-9% worse vs. Deltasone (prednisone)
Not enough review data. Review it!
+5% better vs. Deltasone (prednisone)
Not enough review data. Review it!
+20% better vs. Deltasone (prednisone)
Have you used Anusol Hc (hydrocortisone)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
Side effects
PrednisoneHydrocortisone

The Prednisone FDA package insert doesn’t have numbers about how common side effects are.

More about Prednisone side effects »

We haven’t found good data for Hydrocortisone side effects.

FDA side effect reports for Hydrocortisone »
How it works
PrednisoneHydrocortisone
Deltasone (Prednisone) is a corticosteroid that's similar to what your body naturally makes. It reduces swelling and other immune responses that can cause you pain, discomfort, or harm.Anusol Hc (Hydrocortisone) is a topical steroid that works by decreasing skin itching, swelling, and redness.
Type of medication
PrednisoneHydrocortisone
Prescription only
Over-the-counter
Available as
PrednisoneHydrocortisone
  • Pill
  • Extended release
  • Liquid
  • Cream, gel, or ointment
  • Lotion
  • Topical solution
Used for
PrednisoneHydrocortisone
  • Skin Inflammation
Risk factors for serious side effects
PrednisoneHydrocortisone
  • Lowering dose or stopping too quickly especially after long-term treatment
  • Stress such as trauma, surgery or infection
  • Long-term treatment
  • Not vaccinated against viral diseases
  • Contact with people who have viral illness
Detailed Deltasone (prednisone) risks & warnings »
  • Long-term treatment
  • Not vaccinated against viral diseases
  • Contact with people who have viral illness
  • History of bacterial or viral conditions
Detailed Anusol Hc (hydrocortisone) risks & warnings »
Pregnancy

Research studies with real people found harmful effects on unborn babies, but the benefits might outweigh the risks even if you’re pregnant. Talk with your doctor.

Research studies with animals found harmful effects on unborn babies. It hasn’t been properly studied in humans. The benefits might outweigh the risks even if you’re pregnant. Talk with your doctor.

Price
PrednisoneHydrocortisone
  • Short-term use in controlling immune responses that are causing you discomfort, and works quickly to relieve symptoms like swelling, rash, asthma attacks, gout attacks.
No price related info.
Food
PrednisoneHydrocortisone
  • Take with food to decrease stomach upset.
No food related info.
Kidneys and liver
PrednisoneHydrocortisone
  • Adrenal suppression leading to adrenal crisis can occur if you lower your dose or stop taking Deltasone (Prednisone) too quickly. Symptoms include joint or muscle pain, extreme low energy and depression. Changes in your Deltasone (Prednisone) dose need to be done slowly over time. Talk to your doctor before you make any changes or stop the medication.
No kidneys and liver related info.
Upsides and benefits
PrednisoneHydrocortisone
  • Steroid magic, can help you feel better, have more energy and get more appetite.
  • Useful for many conditions.
  • Short-term use in controlling immune responses that are causing you discomfort, and works quickly to relieve symptoms like swelling, rash, asthma attacks, gout attacks.
  • Long-term use in suppressing the immune system from causing your body harm, like many autoimmune related conditions.
  • Relieves itchy and irritated skin.
  • Doesn't cause the same types of side effects that oral forms of steroids do.
  • It's available over the counter in the drugstore.
  • Most people have very few side effects.
Downsides and risks
PrednisoneHydrocortisone
  • Lots of side effects, especially with long term use.
  • Short-term use can cause mood changes, trouble sleeping and increase in blood pressure, blood sugar, and possible water retention.
  • Long-term use can cause problems with skin, bone, eye health and put you at a higher risk for infections.
  • People with certain conditions will have to pay extra attention to their symptoms or may have to adjust the dose of other medicines when taking Prednisone.
  • When using corticosteroids for more than 1 week, you will need to work with a doctor to get off the medicine slowly.
  • Only available as an oral medicine so the rest of your body will be exposed to the medicine.
  • It's not a strong steroid, so it doesn't work for everyone.
  • When used longer than a week, it can cause skin-thinning and make it harder for broken skin to heal.
Tips from our pharmacists for people taking the medication
PrednisoneHydrocortisone
  • The dose and duration on how long you need the medicine depends on your condition and response.
  • Take it exactly as your doctor prescribed.
  • Take with food to decrease stomach upset.
  • Can cause trouble sleeping. Take in the morning or 2-3 hours before bed if more than one dose is needed.
  • Can cause changes in mood, blood pressure, blood sugar, and water retention.
  • You should check your blood pressure and blood sugar when taking this medicine if you already have high blood pressure or diabetes.
  • A taper is is often needed to stop the medicine, especially if you've been on it for more than 1 week.
  • Rub a thin layer of Anusol Hc (Hydrocortisone) into the area of skin that is affected.
  • Don't rub it into broken areas of skin and leave the area uncovered.
  • Wash your hands after applying it each time.
  • Don't use Anusol Hc (Hydrocortisone) more often than your doctor or the package label recommends.
  • Wait at least 30 minutes between applying moisturizing lotions and this medication.
  • Talk to your doctor if your skin gets worse or hasn't improved in seven days.
Learn more
More about PrednisoneSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
Have you used Deltasone (prednisone)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
More about HydrocortisoneSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
Have you used Anusol Hc (hydrocortisone)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it