Pete Buttigieg has a decent educational and professional background and good command of the English language and some appreciation for facts, which is why I call this choice of words into question and seek a strictly technical answer.
In this recent video1 (
08:05) of a discussion with a late night talk show host there is the following exchange (transcribed from closed caption, verified by audio):
BUTTIGIEG: I mean, for one thing, let’s remember that to the best of our knowledge, even as we speak, he is on psychoactive steroid medication, and he’s making policy decision.
TALK SHOW HOST: And he did’t bring enough for everybody!
I understand that taking a psychoactive substance isn't necessarily bad or even remarkable; having a single, good cup of coffee before making a decision would not be considered ill-advised or reckless (I often do that before "deciding" if I should get out of bed each day) and it is correct to say that that person has take a psychoactive substance.
I also understand that some steroid medications can have psychological side effects.
Question: But is calling dexamethasone a "psychoactive steroid medication" correct medical use of the term psychoactive? If so, is that simply because it has reported psychological side effects?
The drug in question seems2,3 to be Dexamethasone
Fictitious "bonus points" for any background information on accepted medical advice given to decision makers when these kinds of medications are prescribed; are there standard cautions?
1The Late Show with Stephen Colbert circa 2020-10-07
2Dexamethasone, remdesivir, Regeneron: Trump's Covid treatment explained