- Any of the steroid hormones made by the cortex (outer layer) of the adrenal gland. Cortisol is a corticosteroid.
* * *A steroid produced by the adrenal cortex ( i.e., adrenal corticoid); a corticoid containing a steroid. SYN: adrenocorticoid, corticoid (3), cortin.
* * *cor·ti·co·ste·roid .kȯrt-i-kō-'sti(ə)r-.ȯidalso -'ste(ə)r- n any of various adrenal-cortex steroids (as corticosterone, cortisone, and aldosterone) that are divided on the basis of their major biological activity into glucocorticoids and mineralocorticoids
* * *n.any steroid hormone synthesized by the adrenal cortex. There are two main groups of corticosteroids. The glucocorticoids (e.g. cortisol, cortisone, and corticosterone) are essential for the utilization of carbohydrate, fat, and protein by the body and for a normal response to stress. Naturally occurring and synthetic glucocorticoids have very powerful anti-inflammatory effects and are used to treat conditions that involve inflammation. The mineralocorticoids (e.g. aldosterone) are necessary for the regulation of salt and water balance.
* * *cor·ti·co·ster·oid (kor″tĭ-ko-sterґoid) any of the 21-carbon steroids elaborated by the adrenal cortex (excluding the sex hormones of adrenal origin) in response to corticotropin (ACTH) released by the pituitary gland or to angiotensin II. They are divided, according to their predominant biologic activity, into two major groups: glucocorticoids, chiefly influencing carbohydrate, fat, and protein metabolism, and mineralocorticoids, affecting the regulation of electrolyte and water balance. Some corticosteroids exhibit both types of activity in varying degrees, and others exert only one type of effect. They are used clinically for hormonal replacement therapy, for suppression of ACTH secretion by the anterior pituitary, as antineoplastic, antiallergic, and antiinflammatory agents, and to suppress immune responses. Called also adrenocorticoid, corticoid, adrenal cortical or adrenocortical steroid, and adrenocortical or cortical hormone.
Medical dictionary. 2011.