It is the patient's decision whether or not to have viscosupplementation for treatment of knee arthritis pain. The following guidelines are generally recommended to patients who are considering this treatment.

Indications for viscosupplementation for knee osteoarthritis:

    Viscosupplementation is a medical treatment for knee osteoarthritis patients with the following indications:

  • Have pain that affects daily activities, such as extended standing and walking
  • Are sensitive to NSAID medications such as ibuprofen, or find NSAIDs do not provide adequate relief
  • Knee Injection
    Knee injection. Click to enlarge
  • Do not get adequate pain relief from joint aspirations
  • Do not get adequate pain relief from steroid injections, or want to avoid steroid injections
  • Want to avoid or postpone surgery
  • In short, viscosupplementation is most appropriate for patients who have exhausted other medical treatments and want to avoid or postpone knee surgery.

Contraindications for viscosupplementation for knee osteoarthritis:

    Viscosupplementation may not be appropriate for some knee osteoarthritis patients, including those who have:

  • A knee joint infection or a skin disease or infection at or near the site of injection
  • Certain bleeding disorders
  • A known allergy to hyaluronan or hylan
  • Additionally, patients with an allergy to eggs, bird feathers, or other bird products (e.g. poultry) should tell their doctor, as this is considered a contraindication for certain viscosupplementation products that are made from rooster combs.

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Written by Vijay B. Vad, MD
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