Cortico Steroid Injections Whitstable

We are qualified to prescribe and administer cortiso steroid injections to ensure the fast pain relief and the quickest recovery times. Injection therapy is often more successful in combination with manual and physical therapy.

Cortisone is a substance very similar to a natural steroid produced by the body called Cortisol. A controlled injection of cortisone into a specific area, joint, bursa or tendon sheet, reduces inflammation and therefore swelling and pain which speeds up repair and recovery.

The three main clinical benefits of cortisone are:

1. Pain Relief

2. Decreased swelling and inflammation

3. Improved healing and a faster recovery rate

You could benefit from a cortisone injection in conjunction with physical therapy if you suffer from Frozen Shoulder, Tennis and golfers elbow, Carpal tunnel syndrome, Trigger finger, Bursitis shoulder / hip, Arthritis, Plantar fasciitis, etc

Patient Information

A corticosteroid (or ‘cortisone’) is an anti-inflammatory medicine, which can be injected directly into the joint / tissues that are causing your symptoms to relieve inflammation which causes pain, swelling, and stiffness.

The injection can help to relieve swelling, pain and stiffness caused by inflammation. This often helps you to start your rehabilitation and return to normal activities sooner by ‘breaking the cycle’ of pain and inflammation. It can also be helpful to aid in the diagnosis of your condition if it is not clear which structures are responsible for your pain. You may also have a local anaesthetic injected at the same time, which allows for temporary pain relief.

The possible side effects of the injection are rare and include:

  • Flushing of the face for a few hours.
  • Small area of fat loss or change in skin colour around the injection site.
  • A temporary increase in pain 24 to 48 hours after the injection. If you experience increased pain for a longer period of time then please contact us for advice.
  • Patients with diabetes may notice a temporary increase in blood sugar levels. If you have diabetes, you are advised to check your blood sugar levels for three days post-injection.
  • Temporary bruising or bleeding in the injected area, especially if you are taking antiplatelet medicines (such as aspirin) or anticoagulant medicines. Please advise the team if you are taking any blood thinning medicines.
  • Infection: If the area becomes hot, swollen and painful for more than 24 hours, or if you feel generally unwell, you should contact your physiotherapist or doctor immediately. If they are unavailable, you should seek advice from your GP or Emergency Department (A&E).
  • Slight vaginal bleeding/menstrual irregularities.
  • Allergic reaction to the drug: This will usually happen immediately so you will be asked to wait for a short time after your injection to check for any reactions. If you have any signs of an allergic reaction after you have left the hospital then please seek medical advice.
  • Patients with HIV can have side effects if taking certain medications.

Before the injection we will ensure that this is the most appropriate treatment. You should not have the injection carried out if you:

  • have any infection in the area to be injected or anywhere else in your body
  • are allergic to local anaesthetic or steroids
  • feel unwell
  • are due to have surgery in that area soon
  • are pregnant or breastfeeding
  • have poorly controlled diabetes
  • do not want the injection.

Yes there are.  They include lifestyle changes (weight management and exercises), use of anti-inflammatory medicines and physiotherapy, which will be discussed whether you decise to have the injection or not. Occasionally, a surgical opinion may be helpful. If you would like further information about these other options then please let us know.

The benefits and risks of the injection will be explained to you in detail. You will then be placed in a comfortable position. The skin is cleaned with antiseptic. A needle is gently positioned into the affected area and the solution is injected through the needle. A plaster will be placed over the site to keep it clean. A few minutes after the injection you will be examined again.

The injection is not particularly painful as your clinical specialist is highly experienced and thoroughly trained in this procedure. Sometimes it can be sore for a few hours after the procedure. It is safe for you to continue to take prescribed analgesia during this period. If you require prescription analgesia, do let us know as we can provide private prescriptions if suitable in the clinic.

If local anaesthetic is also used in the injection, your pain may start to improve within a few minutes; although this may return when it wears off (similar to when you visit the dentist). The steroid usually starts to work after 24 to 48 hours, but it may take a little longer. The effect of the injection varies from person.

You will receive detailed advice after the injection and often rehabilitation is started.  Evidence shows the combination of injection therapy has much longer lasting benefits if combined with physiotherapy / rehabilitation / specific stretches and exercises.

Depending on the cause of your pain, you may be asked to rest the area for a short period after the injection. This does not usually mean total rest but refraining from activities that make your pain worse, after which you should try to gradually return to full function. This is to maximize the benefit given by the injection.

You will be shown some exercises / stretches to do whilst you are in the clinic, and offered further physiotherapy treatment with the same clinician if required.

If you are having other medical treatment within six weeks, you should tell the treating clinician that you have received a corticosteroid injection.

You may be asked to attend a follow-up appointment a few weeks after your injection to check your progress and continue your rehabilitation / physiotherapy to achieve long lasting benefits. Occasionally, more than one injection is required.

Your clinical specialist is a prescriber, fully qualified to advise you on the benefits of anti-inflammatory medication.  A private prescription is needed can be issued if needed.

If local anaesthetic is also used the pain should be less within a few minutes, though it may return after about an hour. The steroid usually starts to work within 24-48 hours but may take longer, up to 6 weeks to reach its full benefit.  Often a combination with progressive rehabilitation / physiotherapy will achieve optimal outcomes.

Your Clinical Specialist will want to see you again about a 1-2 weeks after the injection. You will then be given appropriate physiotherapy treatment and advised on Home exercises / stretches and ergonomics.

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