Corticosteroids reduce or eliminate the inflammation of tissues surrounding a joint injury or disease. Inflammation comes with symptoms like swelling, heat, discoloration and pain. The injection of a cortisone shot at the site or joint pan can relieve these symptoms well. Initially, cortisone injections were used in the 1950s by doctors attempting to treat diseases and disorders that cause chronic pain, like arthritis.
What Are Cortisone Injections?
Cortisone shots or injections are delivered into joints in the body that are causing the patient pain. Particularly useful for pain that is caused by inflammation, cortisone shots are sometimes made up of a corticosteroid medication and an anesthetic. Some medical professionals prefer to apply a local numbing agent, and inject only the cortisone.
As part of a treatment program for a wide variety of diseases and disorders, cortisone injections help a person relieve tension on the joints, return to a full motion spectrum more quickly and retain a pain free health profile.
The Benefits of Cortisone Injections
Some of the diseases which are treated with cortisone injections include: Baker’s Cysts, Bursitis, Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, separation of the patella, frozen shoulder, gout, juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, osteoarthritis, plantar fasciitis, rotator cuff injuries, tendinitis and tennis elbow. While there are risks to the use of cortisone injections, there is limited evidence that the risk outweighs the potential benefit.
The return to an active and pain free lifestyle is a serious benefit. When used properly, the injections of cortisone can relieve pain for many years.
How Do Cortisone Injections Work?
Cortisone is a steroid that is normally made by the body naturally. Its job is to shrink things, slow down processes that are damaging to the body and to reduce swelling. While cortisone is a steroid, it is not the same kind of steroid that athletes use to create bulky muscle.
The physician administering the cortisone injection should have a consultation with the patient to explain the risks and determine a shared scope on the outcomes of the treatment. Sometimes multiple cortisone shots are required to address an issue, but they are performed in an out-patient setting. For many people, there are absolutely no side effects of the use of cortisone injections, but some people do suffer for a week or so after the injection. Many patients report an immediate decrease in pain following the injection, but medical professionals will restrict movement and require rest for the area treated.
This helps to speed the healing time and prevent re-injury. There can be a rise in the patient’s blood sugar when diabetes is present, a thinning of the blood, making it harder to clot, and discoloration at the site of the injection. In some rare cases, a patient may experience an allergic reaction to the injection.