While steroid joint injections are safe and effective, they need to be administered by a professional health care provider that is trained in giving these injections.
The most common side effect experienced by patients that receive steroid injection is a little soreness in the injection site for several days after having the treatment. The pain is usually mild and manageable and most patients will experience pain relief for their condition within a few hours, making it worth the slight tenderness or muscle soreness experienced at the injection site.
Other possible side effects of having steroid injections in a joint will depend on where the injection is given. In most cases the low-level pain or discomfort felt from the injection can be relieved by taking paracetamol.
More concerning side effects
Some patients may experience slight bruising under the skin at the injection site. This is usually temporary and the bruising will heal and fade after a few days.
However, if you have bruising at the injection site that doesn’t subside and becomes worse with redness, swelling and pain, this may be a sign of an infection and you should seek medical help from your doctor as soon as possible.
Less serious side effects
As well as a little minor soreness or bruising at the injection site, steroid joint injections may cause a little dimpling of the skin at the site. This could be caused by a loss of subcutaneous fat at the injection site and may or may not be permanent.
Some patients have reported noticing that their skin becomes paler around the injection site. This may be a permanent side effect.
If you are a diabetic or you have high blood pressure, you may see your blood sugar levels rise for a few days following an injection, and your blood pressure may go up slightly for a few days too.
Both of these side effects will usually stabilise and return back to your pre-injection levels within a week. However, if you are worried, do not hesitate to get in contact with Dr Bhadauria’s team who will be able to advise you.
Steroid injections can also have the same mild side effects as taking oral steroid tablets. These can include increased appetite, restless sleep and mood changes.
Headache side effects
Epidural injections into the spine can sometimes give patients a painful headache. Patients are recommended to lie down and rest until the headache subsides. It is worth notifying your specialist if you get bad headaches after an injection in the spine.
In most cases you will need to leave 3 months between steroid joint injections and most doctors will not recommend having more than three injections in the same area in a year.
If you are looking to have steroid injections to treat joint pain, then let your consultant know if you recently had any vaccinations or you plan to get some soon.
When booking a consultation with Dr Bhadauria, you will be given a thorough medical examination and your medical history will be looked at to make sure you are a suitable candidate for steroid joint injections.
Do not hesitate to get in touch with our team if you need any help or advice about steroid injections for pain relief, we are here to help!