Fluticasone propionate is a synthetic (man-made) corticosteroid that is used on the skin (topically). The naturally-occurring corticosteroid is cortisol or hydrocortisone produced by the adrenal gland. Corticosteroids have potent anti-inflammatory actions and also suppress the immune response. Similar drugs include betamethasone dipropionate (Diprolene), clobetasol propionate (Temovate), halobetasol propionate (Ultravate), betamethasone dipropionate (Diprosone), desoximetasone (Topicort), halcinonide (Halog), amcinonide (Cyclocort), triamcinolone acetonide (Kenalog), fluocinolone acetonide (Synalar), hydrocortisone butyrate (Locoid), hydrocortisone valerate (Westcort), and mometasone furoate (Elocon). The FDA approved topical fluticasone propionate in December, 1990.
Whilst the use of inhaled steroids and long acting beta-adrenoceptor agonists (LABA) are recommended in asthma guidelines for the resulting improved symptom control,  concerns have been raised that salmeterol may increase the small risks of asthma deaths and this additional risk is not reduced with the additional use of inhaled steroids.  Other side effects from this drug combination may include increased blood pressure, change in heart rate, an irregular heartbeat, increased risk of osteoporosis, cataracts, and glaucoma.