Dr. Navera Ahmed is trained to provide injections into various joints and bursae. Steroids have powerful anti inflammatory effect. Thus when injected directly into a joint or bursa it can provide fast anti inflammatory effect which in turn can decrease pain and swelling in a joint. Direct injections of steroids into joints provide targeted localized anti inflammatory effect. Whereas oral medications like Non steroidal anti-inflammatories or oral steroids have to be absorbed through your stomach lining and transported through the blood stream to exert their effect. As such systemic side effects can occur and the Anti-inflammatory effect is not as targeted as a direct injection into the joints.
Steroids are usually injected into the joint spaces and not directly into the bones.
Some common Rheumatologic conditions treated with steroid injections are:
- Rotator cuff tendonitis, Shoulder Arthritis presenting with shoulder pain, stiffness, swelling , decreased range of motion of shoulders which can be helped by steroid injection
- Pain or swelling of the knees due to Arthritis can be helped with knee joint injections. Knees are common joints to get injected. Injections usually are very well tolerated and procedure is simple and quick. Conditions like Osteoarthritis, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Psoriatic Arthritis, Gout, Pseudogout, are some of the conditions that are often treated with corticosteroid injections in the knees.
- Other joints that are also injected are elbows, ankles, small joints of the hands and feet.
- Multiple bursa areas of the body like trochanteric bursa subacromial bursa subdeltoid bursa etc. are also common and easy sites to inject with corticosteroid injections which provide much relief to patients with inflammation in these areas.
Aspiration of joint fluids:
Dr. Navera Ahmed is also trained to aspirate fluid from joint spaces. Joint fluid can be sent out for analysis which can give valuable information about infection, inflammation gout, pseudo-gout crystals, Lyme arthritis etc. This information can be very useful in diagnosing and treating various Rheumatologic conditions.
Moreover fluid aspiration from large swollen joints can provide relief of pressure and decrease in pain for patients who have excessive amounts of fluid in their joints that may have accumulated due to inflammation or other conditions.
You should discuss with your Rheumatologist about risk benefits of joint aspirations and injections.