Joints are one of the most mobile parts of our bodies. This is because any movement needs the combination of more than one bone structure interconnected by joints. This makes them prone to overuse and eventual wear and tear, causing pain and discomfort, especially for athletes and people who perform frequent rigorous physical activity. There are many treatment options available to deal with these joint issues, with a common one being joint injections Eugene. More about joint injections are discussed further below.
What are Joint Injections?
These are injections applied to your joints to assist you in dealing with inflammation and pain at a specific site. Typical areas in the body to get them to include the elbow, ankle, knee, hip, wrist, spine, or shoulder. These shots can also be applied to the tiny joints in your feet or hands.
Most joint injections have a local anesthetic and a corticosteroid drug performed in your physician’s office. There is a limit to the number of injections you can get as there can be potential risks.
These cortisone shots are highly effective in handling inflammatory arthritis like rheumatoid arthritis. They can also be used in dealing with other ailments like:
- Back pain
- Reactive arthritis
- Psoriatic arthritis
- Rheumatoid arthritis
Joint injections have potential side effects that increase with frequency of use and size of doses. Some typical side effects involve:
- Death of a nearby bone
- Cartilage damage
- Nerve damage
- Joint infection
- Temporary inflammation or pain in the joint
- Temporary facial flushing
- Tendon weakening or rupture
- A temporary rise in blood sugar
- Thinning of nearby bone
- Lightening or whitening of the skin surrounding the injection site
- Thinning of soft tissue and skin around the injection area
Frequent cortisone injections can harm the cartilage found in the joint. This makes physicians track the number of shots they give you. It is recommended not to get the shots more regularly than every six weeks while not getting more than three in a year.
Preparation for getting these shots involves not taking blood thinners a few days before the procedure to decrease bruising or bleeding. Certain dietary supplements can also cause blood thinning. Your physician will inform you about the supplements and medications you should not take before the procedure.
The procedure begins with cleaning the site of injection. An anesthetic spray can be sprayed to numb the needle’s insertion site. Your doctor can use imaging techniques like x-ray fluoroscopy or ultrasound to view how the needle moves in your body so they can position it in the right place.
Once the right spot is located, the needle releases the medication. The shot includes an anesthetic for instant pain relief and a corticosteroid drug to relieve inflammation and pain over time.
Temporary flares of pain or discomfort can accompany these injections, but after two days, the issues affecting the joint decrease in severity, and the relief can last for a few months. For joint injection questions, check our website, or call our offices in Eugene, OR.