Considering Cortisone Injections For Knee Pain

Cortisone shots are quite commonly used for treating joint pain caused due to degenerative conditions, such as arthritis. Several individuals with knee pain and related problems resort to cortisone injections if other treatments fail to deliver. However, cortisone shots are not meant for everyone and every known knee pain.

Intro to Cortisone

Cortisone is a kind of anabolic steroid that can be bought as an injection or pill. While several knee injections are called “cortisone injections”, some of these injections are basically the same class of anabolic steroids. The majority of knee injections comprise a blend of a local anesthetic and corticosteroids, like cortisone. The anesthetic reduces discomfort and pain associated with injections. Cortisone helps subside inflammation, making it a potent pain treatment for specific conditions.

Knee Condition Types

A cortisone injection is commonly used for treating joint pain connected with arthritis and similar conditions. There are different kinds of arthritis affecting the knee – including rheumatoid arthritis, psoriatic arthritis, and osteoarthritis. A cortisone injection could also be used for treating knee pain connected to similar conditions, which includes gout and lupus. Knee tendinitis could also be treated with a cortisone injection.

Cortisone Injection Considerations

A cortisone injection could help with treating knee pain that doesn’t respond to over-the-counter (OTC) pain or anti-inflammatory physical therapy or medications. Though the procedure is considered invasive, most individuals prefer cortisone injections to surgery. For people who have degenerative joint problems such as arthritis, cortisone injections can help them buy time prior to a more invasive procedure. Cortisone injections could be a one-time affair or a succession of shots, based on the condition of the knee. Certain medical conditions like rheumatoid arthritis could limit the total cortisone injections available. And, post some injections, a physician could pursue another pain relief treatment option.

Things to Expect

Generally, a cortisone injection is administered as an outpatient treatment in a physician’s office. Before injecting cortisone to the knee, the doctor would first clean the spot and likely apply a numbing solution. However, the injection can get a bit uncomfortable in no time. Post injecting, the spot could be a bit sore for many hours or even some days. Icing the knee is advised for reducing the pain.


As mentioned in the introductory paragraph, a cortisone shot may not work for everyone. For some individuals, in fact, an adverse reaction could happen. Bruising is a possible reaction; knee swelling and pain could temporarily increase in certain cases. However, these symptoms are not serious and should subside in a couple of days.