Soft tissue injections are often used to reduce inflammation and provide pain relief. They are a relatively long-term treatment option and should ensure a reduction of pain and inflammation for a fairly considerable amount of time.
There are three main types of soft tissue injections:
- Steroid-only injections
- Steroid and local anaesthetic combined
- Local anaesthetic-only injections
Local anaesthetic provides a numbing effect while steroids reduce pain and inflammation for a longer period of time. If local anaesthetic is used then you will feel some immediate, temporary improvement. Steroids usually begin to work within a few days and there can be further improvement as the weeks pass.
The beneficial effects of soft tissue injections depend on the type of injection, condition and of course individual response. Sometimes injections can even resolve the problem permanently, but this is not often the case for people living with rheumatic conditions.
Rest and Activity after Soft Tissue Injections
You will receive specific guidelines when you have your injections. However, most people should consider “relative rest” after the procedure. This means continuing with your normal day-to-day life but avoiding any rigorous, strenuous or intense activities.
After the first injection you can discuss future treatment. Many people do have further injections on a regular basis, but it can depend on the condition and how effective the treatment is.
Alternatives to Soft Tissue Injections
Dependent on the individual condition you may be offered a range of treatments. Many people use painkillers and similar oral medications, including oral steroids. Other find physical and occupational therapy has a positive effect on their condition.
In rare and severe cases surgery may be an option. This is not common and again, is dependent on the individual case. All treatment options can be talked over before any final decisions are made.
If you would like to discuss soft tissue injections and other treatment options with Dr Barrett, you can contact her directly through her secretary.