Corticosteroids in sepsis: A new concept for an old drug

Vered Klaitman, Yaniv Almog

    Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

    17 Scopus citations


    Sepsis is an inflammatory syndrome caused by infection. Consequently, anti-inflammatory therapy in sepsis has been a subject of extensive research, and corticosteroids have long been used to treat severe infection. However, studies conducted in the 1980s failed to demonstrate any beneficial effects of high dose, short-term steroid therapy in sepsis and this therapy was therefore abandoned in the last decade. Recently, a new concept has emerged with more promising results - low dose, long-term hydrocortisone therapy - and this approach is now being evaluated in the treatment of septic shock. It is supported by the observation that many sepsis patients have relative adrenal insufficiency. Moreover, the anti-inflammatory effects of steroids and their ability to improve reactivity to catecholamines further contribute to their effects in sepsis. Large randomized clinical trials will be required to determine the extract role of corticosteroids in septic shock.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)51-55
    Number of pages5
    JournalIsrael Medical Association Journal
    Issue number1
    StatePublished - 1 Jan 2003


    • Adrenal insufficiency
    • Anti-inflammatory
    • Corticosteroids
    • Cytokines
    • Septic shock

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • General Medicine


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