Corticosteroids have been used as drug treatment for some time. Lewis Sarett of Merck & Co. was the first to synthesize cortisone, using a complicated 36-step process that started with deoxycholic acid, which was extracted from ox bile .  The low efficiency of converting deoxycholic acid into cortisone led to a cost of US $200 per gram. Russell Marker , at Syntex , discovered a much cheaper and more convenient starting material, diosgenin from wild Mexican yams . His conversion of diosgenin into progesterone by a four-step process now known as Marker degradation was an important step in mass production of all steroidal hormones, including cortisone and chemicals used in hormonal contraception .  In 1952, . Peterson and . Murray of Upjohn developed a process that used Rhizopus mold to oxidize progesterone into a compound that was readily converted to cortisone.  The ability to cheaply synthesize large quantities of cortisone from the diosgenin in yams resulted in a rapid drop in price to US $6 per gram, falling to $ per gram by 1980. Percy Julian's research also aided progress in the field.  The exact nature of cortisone's anti-inflammatory action remained a mystery for years after, however, until the leukocyte adhesion cascade and the role of phospholipase A2 in the production of prostaglandins and leukotrienes was fully understood in the early 1980s.
FDA reviewed a sampling of cases from the FDA Adverse Event Reporting System (FAERS) database, as well as cases in the medical literature of serious neurologic adverse events associated with epidural corticosteroid injections. 2-16 Serious adverse events included death, spinal cord infarction, paraplegia, quadriplegia, cortical blindness, stroke, seizures, nerve injury, and brain edema. Many cases were temporally associated with the corticosteroid injections, with adverse events occurring within minutes to 48 hours after the corticosteroid injections. In some cases, diagnoses of neurologic adverse events were confirmed through magnetic resonance imaging or computed tomography scan. Many patients did not recover from these reported adverse events.
A frozen shoulder is a common cause of a painful and stiff shoulder. A web-based survey was conducted to obtain insight in the current preferences about the diagnosis and treatment of a frozen shoulder. A response rate of 54% was reached among shoulder specialized orthopaedic surgeons from the Netherlands and Belgium. Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and intra-articular corticosteroid injections are used frequently in the first phase of the condition. Physiotherapy is assumed to be more important in the final phase. The results of the survey indicate a wide variety of treatment strategies in the different phases of a frozen shoulder. Three out of four respondents considered that the management of a frozen shoulder could benefit from a written guideline. The development of a written guideline should lead to an improved level of consensus and a more standardized approach in the treatment of a frozen shoulder among shoulder specialists in the Netherlands and Belgium.