Many arthritis patients will be given the option of steroid injections as part of their pain management plan. Steroid mixtures and doses vary from patient to patient, but you can be sure your doctor will be able to make the right decision for your needs. Steroid injections are a common treatment for arthritis and they can be injected either into the joint directly, into the muscle in the affected area or into the soft tissues close to the area. The right type of steroid injections will be dependent on the individual and the thoughts of the medical professional carrying out the procedure.
What Happens when you have your Steroid Injections?
It is understandable you may be nervous about a new kind of treatment. Most steroid injections are quick and easy to perform. In some cases you may have an ultrasound scan to ensure the injection is precisely given where the inflammation is most prevalent. Most injections don’t require this but it is always worth considering.
Some doctors may offer a local anaesthetic with the steroid to reduce the discomfort it can cause. Most anaesthetics will wear off within 30 minutes. Some can leave some numbness for up to a day depending on the dosage and your individual reaction.
It is recommended you arrange transport home after steroid injections, especially with local anaesthetic used. It can make driving difficult due to the numbness.
Injections directly into the joint usually result in the most discomfort. It is still minimal but rest and limiting strenuous exercise for a couple of days is recommended. As with all arthritis treatment long periods of rest are not recommended. It can cause stiffness and exacerbate any immobility caused by the inflammation.
Steroid injections may begin working within a few hours and last a number of days. Other longer-acting versions may not be effective for a week or so. However, they will provide pain relief or easing of the symptoms for up to two months or even longer.
Making an appointment
If you would like to find out more about steroid injections or to make an appointment with Dr Stephanie Barrett please call 020 7730 8508 or make an appointment here.