STEROID INJECTION

What is a Steroid Injection?

Steroid injections can be used for joint problems and rheumatoid arthritis. They can also be used for some conditions affecting soft tissues, like tendon inflammation or tennis elbow. Steroid injections can be very effective. Steroids are chemicals that occur naturally in the body. Steroid medicines can be used to reduce inflammation and are used to treat many different conditions, including arthritis. The main purpose of the steroid injection is to decrease pain and increase movement and use of the affected area. Steroid injections are usually well tolerated and much less likely than steroid tablets to cause serious side-effects.You should rest the injected joint for 1-2 days after the injection and avoid strenuous activity for five days. The steroid injection can be repeated if the first injection is effective. However, you should not have more than four steroid injections into the same place in any 12-month period.

The medicine is administered under Ultrasound or CT guidance and under strict sterile precautions by our highly experienced radiologists, Dr Shane Connolly and Dr Caitlin Kapoor, who have performed over 30,000 procedures combined.

Are there any risks?

The side-effects from steroid injections are uncommon. However, the injected area may be sore for the first few days after the injection. Side-effects are very unlikely but occasionally people notice a flare-up of pain in the injected area within the first 24 hours after the injection. This usually settles on its own within a couple of days but taking simple painkillers like panadol will help.

Other steroid-related side-effects are rare but may include:

  • Infection (If your joint becomes more painful and hot you should see your doctor immediately, especially if you feel unwell)
  • Allergic reactions
  • Local bleeding
  • Flushing of the skin
  • A rise in blood sugar levels for a few days after the injection may occur if you have diabetes