Restricting activities and requiring lots of medication, pain can have an adverse effect on your quality of life. Dr.Guzman offers a professional outpatient treatment that can help you get back on your feet and enjoy life again.
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Let's Look Closer At The Benefits Of Cortisone Shots For Inflammation
Cortisol and Cortisone
Cortisol is a chemical produced by the adrenal gland. It’s one of the body’s stress steroid hormones that is produced by the adrenal gland. Your body produces cortisol as a result of a shock or stress in the body. While it’s fast-acting to reduce inflammation, it only provides short-lived relief.
Cortisone is a synthetically produced steroid that mimics the body’s cortisol. It’s composed of anti-inflammatory and analgesic compounds, but unlike cortisol, it has long term effects.
Cortisone shots should not be confused with anabolic steroid shots. Sometimes used by bodybuilders or athletes, anabolic steroids are produced from testosterone and have no relation to cortisone.
Benefits of a Cortisone Shot
If oral pain medications can no longer manage your pain, doctors will frequently recommend a cortisone shot.
A cortisone shot contains a synthesized cortisone steroid. Unlike pain medication, which masks the cause of pain, a cortisone shot allows a controlled dose of anti-inflammatory medication to be administered directly into the affected area. This reduces the inflammation that causes the pain and swelling for several months, and can also improve joint movement.
You may need further treatment depending on the joint condition, but the initial treatment is likely to relieve your pain.
Another benefit is how quick the treatment is, you can be treated as an outpatient; a hospital stay is not required.
Side Effects of a Cortisone Shot
All medication carries a risk of side effects. However, cortisone shots are considered low risk.
A small number of patients will experience a ‘cortisone flare.’ This can cause discomfort at the injection site for 24-48hrs after the shot. Tenderness caused by cortisone flare is rare and can be treated at home with an ice pack placed on the injection site. If the pain persists, contact our clinic.
The risk factors are increased if a patient has repeated doses of cortisone. Too many cortisone shots may be at risk of damaging joints and raising blood sugar.
Under medical guidance, you may require more than one cortisone shot to manage your pain. This is not usual and will be closely monitored by Dr. Guzman and his team.
Do Cortisone Shots Hurt?
Most people experience some discomfort during a cortisone shot. You will receive a mild local anesthetic before the shot is administered. Depending on the location of inflammation, an MRI may be required for the doctor to guide the needle to where it will achieve the best results.
If your cortisone shot is in a large joint, there is minimal discomfort. If the shot is in a small joint or tendon, it may be less comfortable.
Cortisone Shots for Joint Pain
Over time your joints will experience wear and tear. This can be due to age, strenuous activity, or injury. Knees, wrists, shoulders, and hips take the brunt of this wear and tear and often need joint pain treatment.
If your joints are inflamed and painful, cortisone injections can give real relief. Treatment will vary depending on what’s causing the inflammation.
If the problem is in a knee joint, the doctor might need to remove some of the synovial fluid before the cortisone shot. Once this is completed, you will receive your anesthetic, followed by a cortisone shot. You may experience some additional discomfort, but the instant relief from the release of painful fluid build-up usually offsets any discomfort.
In most cases, the doctor will clean the skin around the injection site, administer a mild local anesthetic, then proceed with the cortisone shot. After the shot, a clinician will clean and cover the injection site.
Before a Cortisone Shot
If you have diabetes, a cortisone shot might temporarily raise your blood sugar level. Make sure our team knows before administering the shot, and monitor your blood sugar after the injection.
If you are taking blood thinners, please notify our team before your injection. Dr. Guzman will discuss a plan to ensure you can safely receive pain relief.
After a Cortisone Shot
It would be best if you avoid any strenuous activities for a week after your cortisone shot.
For example, if you have a cortisone shot in your shoulder, try to avoid lifting anything heavy for a few days. If you get a cortisone shot in your knee, try to keep off your feet (where possible) for a few days.
It’s essential to follow your clinician’s advice to get the most out of your cortisone shot.
All Cortisone Shots are overseen by our lead physician Dr. Guzman.
Have you experienced pain relief from a cortisone shot? Tell us about it and comment below:
For more information on how cortisone shots can ease pain and inflammation, reach out to North Fresno Primary Care at 559-258-0686 or book online. Our head physician Dr. Guzman would be more than happy to answer all your queries.