Cortisone injections, otherwise known as steroid injections, are a powerful anti-inflammatory treatment used to help relieve pain and inflammation and, in some instances, cure the condition treated. They are most commonly injected into larger joints such as knees, ankles and elbows but can also be injected into smaller joints such as metatarsals in the feet.
The injection is usually combined with a local anaesthetic which can help to provide immediate relief from pain.
How Long Does Cortisone/Steroid Injections Last?
Patients can feel immediate relief after the procedure, but it can take up to a week for the pain to settle. In some cases, the injections can be long-lasting and may give pain relief from a month to a year. Dependent on the type of condition, cortisone injections can give a permanent resolution.
How Many Injections Can I Have?
One injection can provide resolution, but a maximum of three injections can be given in a year. Smaller doses can be given at six-weekly intervals or sooner if required.
What area can be treated?
- Knee osteoarthritis
- Ankle osteoarthritis
- Bunion pain/arthritis
- Planter fasciitis
- Heel bursitis
- Morton’s Neuroma
When Should I Not Have A Steriod Injection?
- If you have a hypersensitivity/allergy to any drug/medicine we use – risk of anaphylaxis.
- If you are prone to local or systemic infection (septicaemia and/or sepsis)
- Are reluctant to have the injection
- If you are under 18
- Had a recent fracture
- Have a prosthetic joint
- Are pregnant
Is There Any Side Effects To Having A Steriod Injection?
The side effects associated with steroid injections are very rare but the experienced podiatrist will discuss and explain all of them during the appointment.
- Post injection flare
- Skin atrophy/depigmentation/bleeding
- Tendon atrophy/rupture
- Infection – if the area becomes hot, swollen and painful for more than 24 hours you should contact your clinician or doctor immediately
- Facial flushing
- Menstrual irregularity
- Impaired diabetic control
- Temporary bruising if you are taking blood thinning medication
- After the injection the podiatrist will advise you wait in the waiting room for 30 minutes to ensure there is no allergic reaction to the drug.
When Will The Podiatrist Want To See You?
The podiatrist will see you for a follow-up appointment 7-10 days post-injection. The podiatrist will give you some low-level exercises to get the joint active and mobile at the follow-up appointment.