Corticosteroid injection

INJECTION THERAPY (Corticosteroid)

What is Injection Therapy?

Corticosteroid injections have been scientifically proven to be one of the most helpful treatments for soft tissue and joint disorders (Assendelft 1996, Van der Hijden 1996, Van der Windt 1998). They are used to help calm down inflamed or irritable joints or soft tissues structures like tendons, bursae, muscles and ligaments.

Corticosteroid injections are thought to influence the cells involved in inflammatory responses to disease and injury. The injections often result in a significant and almost immediate relief of pain and stiffness.

The administration of a cortisone injection is an advanced skill that requires extensive post-graduate training by one of our Specialist Physiotherapists. Very few private physiotherapy clinics throughout the UK are able to offer this service.

What can Injection Therapy treat?

Injection Therapy can be highly effective on a wide range of soft tissue and joint conditions. Here are a few examples:

  • Frozen shoulder
  • Joint Osteoarthritis
  • Shoulder or Acromio-Clavicular (A/C) joint pain
  • Knee and ankle pain
  • Bursitis
  • Tendinitis, Tenosynovitis eg De Quervain’s or trigger finger
  • Finger and wrist pain
  • Plantar fasciitis and heel pain
  • Tennis or Golfers elbow

How long does the injection take to work?

Corticosteroid injections can take a few days to a couple of weeks to be fully effective. The timing of the pain relief depends on how long the inflammation takes to settle down following the injection.

Patients often experience post-injection discomfort or pain known as ‘post-injection flare-up’ and an increase in pain can last for a few days. This is best treated with ice and ibuprofen/paracetamol.

For the first few days following an injection it is important to reduce activity with the injected area in order to maximise the effect of the corticosteroid.

A second injection may be required in order to maximise the effect of the corticosteroid.