You suffer with pain in your joints. This pain is caused by inflammation of the capsule around the joint. In order to relieve this pain your medical practitioner has proposed a joint injection. This page further outlines what this treatment entails.
INFLAMMATION OF THE JOINT CAPSULE
Your body has various joints: for example the hip, knee, shoulder, ankle, elbow, wrist and foot. A joint is the ‘hinge’ between two bones. The smooth cartilage surface ensures that the tips of the bones slide smoothly over one another. Synovial fluid ‘lubricates’ the joint so that it moves supply. The joint is encased by a joint capsule that provides strength, to help the bones knit together. The joint capsule is made up of connective tissue. In your case an inflammation is (most likely) present here.
When a joint capsule is inflamed the medical practitioner can inject the joint. The treatment can have two objectives:
With the injection the medical practitioner wants to see whether the inflammation of the joint capsule is the cause of your painful symptoms. The effect of the injection is temporary, which means that the injection temporarily eliminates the source of pain.
If it is clear that the painful symptoms derive from the joint, the medical practitioner can try to lessen these symptoms with an injection of corticosteroids. This will relieve the pain, which in turn will help you do the exercises necessary for improving the joint’s function.
First the medical practitioner will disinfect your skin where the injection will be administered. Under x-ray control the medical practitioner inserts a thin needle into the joint. Next they inject some contrast agent (Omnipaque) to see if the needle is positioned correctly in the joint. If the treatment is for diagnostic purposes only a local anaesthetic (Lidocaine 2%) is injected. If the treatment is for therapeutic purposes the medical practitioner will inject a mix of a local anaesthetic (Lidocaine 2%) and a corticosteroid (Decadron® 10 mg).
The treatment takes around 15 minutes.
For further information about potential side effects and risks, and for other instructions we kindly ask you to read through the “your visit” and “after your treatment” information provided to you.