Non-surgical treatments for arthritis include injections into the painful joint. The two most common types of injections for arthritis are steroid injections and hyaluronic acid injections (viscosupplementation). It is important to note that joint injections are intended to reduce pain symptoms from arthritis such that patients can participate in physical therapy exercise and everyday activities in order to stretch and strengthen the arthritic joint.
Steroid injections can cause side effects and adverse events. Pain and swelling are most common, but other problems, such as skin discoloration, infection, and hormone-related changes in women, can occur.
Cortisone injections are used to treat joint pain caused by inflammation, including inflammation related to arthritis. Understand when these injections are appropriate, how to set expectations with your physician, and cortisone’s limitations.
Hyaluronic acid injections may reduce pain and improve knee function in osteoarthritis. These injections are usually used in people who have moderate osteoarthritis and have little or no benefit from pain-relieving medications.