Specialist Joint Injections
To ease inflammation within a joint, we provide two different types of joint injection: Cortisone and Ostenil.
Cortisone is a powerful anti-inflammatory medication. It is not a pain relieving medication, it only treats the inflammation. When pain is decreased from cortisone it is because the inflammation is diminished. People often have the impression that cortisone injections merely "mask the problem" but this is not the case.
By injecting the Cortisone into a particular area of inflammation, very high concentrations of the medication can be given while keeping potential side-effects to a minimum. Cortisone injections usually work within a few days, and the effects can last up to several weeks. This provides a ‘window’ in which we can start rehabilitation.
What is Cortisone?
Cortisone is a type of steroid that is produced naturally by a gland in your body called the adrenal gland. Cortisone is released from the adrenal gland when your body is under stress. Natural cortisone is released into the blood stream and is relatively short-acting.
Injectable cortisone is synthetically produced and has many different trade names (e.g. Celestone, Kenalog, etc.), but is a close derivative of your body’s own product. The most significant differences are that synthetic cortisone is not injected into the blood stream, but into a particular area of inflammation. Also, the synthetic cortisone is designed to act more potently and for a longer period of time (days instead of minutes).
Ostenil injections allow us to supplement the synovial fluid via intra-articular injections of hyaluronic acid. This provides lubrication to the joint which in turn helps to alleviate the mechanical loading and improve the shock absorbing function of the joint. in turn this can help to prevent cartilage wear.
Key uses of these injections is to provide pain relief and an improvement in joint mobility which may last for several months following a treatment cycle.
Treatment is effective for a range of complaints including sports injury’s and osteoarthritis.
What are the common reasons for a joint injection?
Many conditions where inflammation is an underlying problem are amenable to cortisone shots. These include, but are certainly not limited to, the following:
- Shoulder Bursitis
- Frozen Shoulder
- Trigger Finger
- Tennis Elbow
- Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
Can I have it more than once?
Yes. There is no rule as to how many cortisone injections can be given. Often physicians do not want to give more than three in one area, but there is not really a specific limit to the number of injections. However, there are some practical limitations. If a cortisone injection wears off quickly or does not help the problem, then repeating it may not be worthwhile.
Studies have shown effects of weakening of tendons and softening of cartilage with cortisone injections. Repeated cortisone injections multiply these effects and increase the risk of potential problems. This is the reason many physicians limit the number of injections they offer to a patient.