Sometimes, joint pain is too much to manage with over-the-counter pain relievers, rest, and physical therapy alone. At Behm Family Practice in Wexford, Pennsylvania, board-certified family medicine doctor John Behm, MD, provides joint injections, including in the knee, to help you manage joint pain and progress on the road to recovery. To schedule an appointment, call or click today.
Your joints are where your bones connect. They’re what make you flexible and allow you to move around. Joint pain can result from injuries, including sports injuries, or from chronic conditions, such as various types of arthritis.
Your knees are a common site of joint pain and illustrate how joint pain is often a cycle that’s difficult to break. Because you need your knees for so much, resting them to avoid aggravating the pain may be practically impossible. In this state, you probably won’t feel up to participating in physical therapy, so you can’t progress in your recovery.
In many situations, joint pain, especially resulting from minor injuries, improves with rest and over-the-counter medication. However, when joint pain is the result of a chronic condition or severe injury, conservative approaches may not work. Also, if you’re in too much pain to move the affected joint, you can’t follow an effective course of physical therapy to help you fully recover and strengthen your joint.
Dr. Behm provides injections of steroid medications to treat inflammatory joint pain that doesn’t respond to rest, including in your knees, hips, ankles, feet, and shoulders. The injections reduce your pain and discomfort, providing you short-term relief. When you’re in less pain, you can better handle physical therapy, so you can work toward a full recovery.
Dr. Behm prepares for joint injections with an imaging test, such as an MRI, so he can locate the exact site of your pain and determine where exactly the injection should go. When it’s time for you to receive the injection, he first numbs the treatment area with a topical anesthetic, then injects a steroid medication combined with a local anesthetic.
You should be able to walk around comfortably immediately following the procedure, but you’ll need someone to drive you home. The downtime from a joint injection is minimal, so you can plan to rest afterward but return to your usual activities the next day.
The pain relief of a joint injection is usually immediate thanks to the numbing effects of the local anesthetic. However, the steroid medication takes a few days to kick in, so you may experience a return of your pain after the anesthetic wears off, but before the steroid takes effect. So, if you feel pain in the days following your joint injection, that doesn’t mean anything went wrong.
Once the steroid medication takes effect, you’ll feel pain relief for several months. You may need follow-up injections, but you’ll likely make significant progress in your recovery after the injection because you finally feel up to participating in physical therapy.
To find out how joint injections can help with pain resulting from injuries and chronic conditions, call or use the online booking tool today.