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Benefits of steroid injections


Steroid injections act to relieve inflammation in and around joints. By reducing inflammation, they can help reduce pain and increase mobility in the affected joint or tendon. Corticosteroids (as used in medical practice) are very different to anabolic steroids used by body builders, and will not have the same effect on muscle growth!

Steroid injections may also be called cortisone injections, hydrocortisone injections, steroid joint injections, corticosteroid injection, intra- articular injections or extra- articular injections.

Steroid injections are useful in the treatment of:

Areas I can offer injections:

Steroid injections should not always be considered a first line option. I would often advocate physical therapies as a first line treatment for joint pains or for post injection rehabilitation. I recommend Pure Physiotherapy as a local physiotherapist, but if you choose another provider, please ensure registration and accreditation. Sometimes, physiotherapy is not possible due to the pain and limitation in movement. In these cases, steroid joint injections can be used to give rapid relief, to enable subsequent physiotherapy in order to complete the long term recovery. In other cases, physiotherapy may not provide sufficient relief alone. In these cases, steroid injections can give the final boost needed to optimise joint health. Some people may not feel physiotherapy is right for them, in which case steroid injections are always an option, as I would expect this to offer rapid relief of pain and maximisation of joint and limb use. There is good evidence that beginning therapy early for arthritis is helpful1,2,3. This has been shown to reduce and delay the need for any surgery, and also to minimise painkiller use. People who are on regular strong painkillers are at increased risk of dependence, falls, and cognitive decline. Additionally, we often see an increasing demand for stronger analgesia (pain relief) as tolerance builds. By reducing the joint inflammation or tendinopathy, this will reduce the need for analgesia, and reduce the risks of further decline in strength and joint health. It has been well proven that remaining as active as able is vitally important to retain strength and slow any decline. Individual joints should not be injected more than three or four times a year, with at least four weeks between injections.