by 1945, from cortico-, word-forming element from comb. form of Latin cortex "bark of a tree" (see cortex), applied since c.1890 to various surface structures of plants, animals, or organs + steroid. So called because they are produced in the adrenal cortex. Related: Corticosterone.
(kôr'tĭ-kō-stîr'oid', -stěr'-) Any of the steroid hormones, such as cortisol or aldosterone, produced by the cortex of the adrenal gland. Corticosteroids are also produced synthetically for medicinal purposes.