Joint pain can affect your life in so many different ways. It can reduce your mobility and keep you from being able to complete your daily routine as easily as you’d like. It may even keep you from getting a good night’s sleep and start to impact your mood.
Fortunately, some medical treatments can ease that pain and restore your quality of life, and one of those methods is joint injection therapy.
At Health Solutions located in Munster, Indiana, and Tinley Park, Rockford, and Flossmoor, Illinois, our team offers joint injection therapy to address a number of health conditions that cause joint pain. In this blog, we review what you need to know about this innovative treatment..
Types of joint injections
To address different types of joint pain problems, we offer a wide variety of joint injections, including the following:
Steroid injections are made up of corticosteroids and an anesthetic. When this liquid medication is injected into the joint that’s causing you issues, it reduces any inflammation that can alleviate both pain and swelling.
Though steroid injections aren’t able to cure the underlying problem, they do provide fast relief when used in conjunction with other treatments like physical therapy.
It’s important to note that steroid injections aren’t painkilling drugs like opioids. Instead of blocking pain signals, they reduce pain by controlling the inflammation that’s putting pressure on your joints.
Viscosupplementation, also known as hyaluronic acid injection therapy, consists of the same lubricating substance that’s found in the fluid of your joints. It works to alleviate joint pain and stiffness, restore function, increase range of motion, and improve stability.
After being injected into the problematic joint, the hyaluronic acid boosts your diminished joint fluid and restores its shock-absorbing functionality.
PRP and PRF injections
Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) uses a highly concentrated serum of platelets that’s derived from a small sample of your own blood. This injection works to flood a damaged joint with powerful growth factors and bioactive proteins that actively:
- Foster cellular regeneration
- Facilitate ongoing tissue repair
- Ease inflammation and pain
- Advance healing and recovery
Platelet-rich fibrin (PRF) injections contain an added fibrin matrix, which helps create a more cohesive and stable injectable product.
Conditions that can be treated with joint injections
Many common joint pain problems respond well to at least one form of joint injection therapy. For some, you might be able to choose from multiple treatment options. Conditions we treat include:
Osteoarthritis (OA) — also referred to as degenerative joint disease — is the most common cause of chronic joint pain. It develops when the smooth cartilage that cushions and protects your joints breaks down over time and causes irregular motion, stiffness, and pain.
Although OA can affect any joint, it tends to develop most often in the knees and hips.
Viscosupplementation is highly effective at easing OA-related knee and hip pain, but PRP or PRF therapy is able to not only alleviate pain but also slow the progression of OA damage in any joint. Steroid injections can also be used to reduce joint pain related to OA.
Joint injuries are a commonly reported cause of joint pain, whether acute or chronic. Most of these types of injuries fall into three general categories:
- Tendon injuries, such as Achilles tendonitis, tennis elbow, and rotator cuff tears
- Ligament injuries, such as a sprained ankle or a torn ACL in the knee joint
- Bursitis, the painful inflammation of the joint-cushioning fluid-filled sacs
Steroid injections tend to work best at easing inflammation and pain that’s been induced by an overuse injury like tendonitis or bursitis. PRP and PRF injections are a great option for accelerating healing and repair if you’re experiencing inflamed bursae, moderate or persistent ligament sprains, and tendon injuries.
Autoimmune disorders such as rheumatoid arthritis (RA), psoriatic arthritis, and lupus often have joint pain as a symptom.
When you have one of these conditions, your immune system attacks and destroys the thin, lubricating membrane that eases fluid joint movement. During an autoimmune flare-up, your joint tissues start to swell and cause the affected joint to feel increasingly stiff and painful.
For these autoimmune flare-ups, steroid injections are a great option. The anesthetic portion of the injection can deliver instant relief while the corticosteroid can work toward giving you pain relief long-term.
Are you ready to find out how you can benefit from joint injections? Schedule an appointment with our team to get started. You can do this by giving one of our office locations a call or by using our online booking tool today.