A joint injection can be used to both diagnose and/or treat joint pain and dysfunction. These injections may provide prolonged pain relief and are typically used in combination with a multimodal regimen that can include physical therapy, medications, and other complementary therapies. The exact location, approach, type of medication(s), dosage of medication(s), is tailored to each individual patient to help ensure your best results.
Joint Injections Q&A
Q: What medications will be used?
Depending on the cause of your pain and the exact location of where your joint pain is, Dr. Zhang will tailor the best and safest formulation and dose for every single patient individually. Typically both a steroid medication and local anesthetic will be used. A steroid is a medication that can be used to treat many painful conditions by decreasing inflammation. A local anesthetic is a medication that is often used as a numbing agent by blocking pain signals. Together these medications can significantly decrease joint pain caused by arthritis, mechanical dysfunction, bony spurs, and inflammation.
Q: What is the joint injection procedure like?
Our staff will help position you for your joint injection. Depending on the location of which joint is injected, we may have you sitting up, laying down on your back, or even laying down on your stomach. We will clean off your skin with some cold soap, which is very important to prevent infection. You will receive some numbing medication that will help prevent pain with the procedure. The doctor will then use either X-ray pictures or ultrasound to guide a needle into place. Once confirmed, the medication will be slowly injected. Sometimes patients may feel a little pressure as the medication is injected into the joint space – don’t worry, this is normal! We will then monitor you and go over discharge instructions before letting you leave.
Q: Am I allowed to go back to work on the same day?
Yes, we do allow patients to go back to work. However, we do caution against any heavy lifting or vigorous activity. But we do encourage you to try some of the activities that initially bothered you, as this may help with your diagnosis.