Injections and Aspirations
Joint injections can often help relieve pain and reduce inflammation in your knee. Cortisone, a type of steroid used to reduce inflammation or viscosupplementations such as supartz, hylogen or synvisc are often used. Combined with a local anesthetic, immediate pain relief is experienced by many patients.
What to expect
Shots are usually given in your doctor's office. You may be asked to remove clothing and put on a gown or shorts in order for the doctor to better access your injured knee. Once the knee has been cleaned, a local anesthetic will numb the injection site. A needle is then inserted into the joint and the medication is released. Because of the local anesthetic, you should not feel anything more than some pressure in your joint as the needle is inserted.
After you receive the injection, you can go about your daily routine with some limitations including mild pain or stiffness in your knee. Your doctor may ask that you protect the knee injection site for a day or two and if possible, stay off your feet. To relieve pain, you should apply ice to the knee as needed.
The injection may cause a temporary flare in pain and inflammation for up to 48 hours. You should then start experiencing decreased pain and inflammation at the injection site. If the pain and swelling continue for more than 48 hours, call your doctor.
Your doctor may recommend removal of fluid from your knee with a syringe. This is called "joint aspiration" and is often done when there is so much swelling that it interferes with range of motion and your ability to use your knee or leg muscles. Once the fluid is removed, your doctor may also recommend a cortisone or viscosupplementation injection.