VISCOSUPPLEMENTATION THERAPY

Viscosupplementation is a popular and effective treatment for osteoarthritis. It is used to relieve the pain associated with the condition, given in injection form.

Hyaluronic acid, a substance which naturally occurs within the body, is used to lubricate the joints. Those suffering with arthritis are known to have a smaller concentration of hyaluronic acid within the joints. So, by injecting additional hyaluronic acid into the joint, it helps to reduce the pain as well as improve mobility.

While research has shown that hyaluronic acid injections aren’t effective in the long-term treatment of arthritis, it is known to be effective in the short term. Results can last for around six to eight months.

When might viscosupplementation prove useful?

Viscosupplementation is commonly used to treat joint osteoarthritis. It is largely used when more conventional conservative methods have failed.

How quickly will viscosupplementation work?

If the injections prove to be effective, pain relief will typically be experienced within one month after the treatment. However, not all patients will find the injections effective. In cases where it has worked, the duration of the results will depend upon several factors such as exercise and diet.

How is the viscosupplementation therapy carried out?

Patients will be treated on an outpatient basis, receiving one to three injections over a period of several weeks. Prior to the treatment, an assessment will be carried out to determine how much damage has been done to the joint and the degree of inflammation and swelling present. Once assessed, the injections will be provided within the clinic.

What are the risks and side effects of viscosupplementation?

It is common for some patients to experience warmth, pain or slight swelling in the injection site which may last for a few hours. An ice pack can prove particularly effective at easing these initial side effects.

In rare cases, the patient may experience an allergic localised reaction, causing the knee to become warm, red and filled with fluid. This can be painful, and the patient should contact their consultant if it occurs. Other rare side effects include bleeding and infection.

Do the injections need to be repeated? 

After the initial course of injections, if shown to be effective, the treatment can be repeated approximately every six to eight months.

What aftercare is required? 

After the treatment, a follow-up appointment will need to be provided in three months. Patients should avoid placing excess weight onto the treated area, vigorous exercise, and standing for long periods of time within 48 hours of the injections. Support and care will be provided after the treatment via the clinic and the helpline.

If you would like more information about the viscosupplementation injections for your condition or would like to make an appointment. Please click on the Get in Touch button and our friendly and responsive team will be delighted to chat.

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