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Ultrasound-guided injections

Steriod injections into the joints

A corticosteroid injection, guided by ultrasound, can be an effective way to treat joint pain caused by a sports injury

What are steroid injections for?

Corticosteroid injections are most often used to treat joint inflammation (synovitis), which may occur in the shoulder, knee and hip. This is often triggered by a sports injury. They may also be used to treat inflammation around tendons and ligaments.

The injection is usually a combination of anti-inflammatory steroid and local anaesthetic, with the needle being carefully guided by ultrasound. Sometimes the injection is used as a diagnostic tool, as well as a treatment.

Need to know

  • What happens during a steroid injection? icon plus

    At the time of the injection, you'll have a scan to determine the exact point of injection – this will be marked on your skin. The skin will also be cleaned with antiseptic, to avoid infection. 

    If your joint is very swollen, the radiologist will remove excess fluid with a needle. Next, the radiologist will inject corticosteroid and local anaesthetic into your joint (or the soft tissue surrounding the joint or tendon) under the guidance of the ultrasound. The procedure will typically take around 10-15 minutes.
  • How to prepare icon plus

    Your consultant will go through the procedure with you and answer any questions you might have. As this is a routine procedure, little preparation is needed.
  • After a steroid injection icon plus

    As the local anaesthetic wears off, your joint may feel sore again. This can last for a few days after the injection, but you'll start to feel the benefits from around five days.

    It may take up to a week or two to take full effect. Sometimes the injection may produced a 'steroid flare' which temporary may irritate the joint lining. In very rare cases, severe pain may indicate an infection. Your consultant will discuss any issues with you.

Our orthopaedic consultants

We're proud to work with leading orthopaedic experts across a range of medical fields, whose skills are matched by their integrity and compassion.
Consultant in theatres

Our locations

From complex sports injuries to investigative tests and procedures, we provide exceptional muscle management across our network of hospitals, outpatient centres and specialist clinics.

  • The Wellington Hospital - South Building

    The Wellington Hospital

    Wellington Place

    London NW8 9LE

    Appointments 020 7483 5148
    General enquiries 020 7586 5959
    Post COVID Recovery service 020 7483 5348

  • London Bridge Hospital

    London Bridge Hospital

    27 Tooley Street

    London

    SE1 2PR

    Appointments & Enquiries 020 7234 2009
    Imaging Appointments 020 7234 2773

  • The Lister Hospital

    Chelsea Bridge Road

    London

    SW1W 8RH

    Appointments 020 7730 8298
    General enquiries 020 7730 7733

  • The Princess Grace Hospital

    42-52 Nottingham Place

    London W1U 5NY

    Appointments 020 7908 8001
    General enquiries 020 7486 1234

  • The Portland Hospital

    The Portland Hospital

    205 - 209 Great Portland Street

    London

    W1W 5AH

    Children's enquiries 020 7390 8020
    Maternity enquiries 020 7390 6068
    Gynaecology enquiries 020 7390 6200

  • HCA UK at The Wilmslow Hospital

    52-54 Alderley Road

    Wilmslow

    SK9 1NY

    Appointments 020 7483 5148
    General enquiries 01615 160 961

  • The HSC exterior

    The Harley Street Clinic

    35 Weymouth Street

    London  W1G 8BJ

    Appointments 020 7935 7700
    General enquiries 020 7034 8181
    Post COVID Recovery service 020 7034 6602

  • London Bridge Hospital Facility

    HCA UK at The Shard

    The Shard, 32 St Thomas Street

    London

    SE1 9BS

    Call 020 3131 6888
    Opening hours 7:30 - 20:00 Monday - Friday

  • Platinum Medical Centre facility

    Platinum Medical Centre

    Platinum Medical Centre, 15 - 17 Lodge Road

    London

    NW8 7JA

    Call 020 7483 5148

Request an appointment

We're happy to help you make an appointment with one of our experienced consultants.

020 7079 4344
This content is intended for general information only and does not replace the need for personal advice from a qualified health professional.
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