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Arthritis Treatment – Corticosteroid

June 5, 2011
Corticosteroid

Corticosteroid

Cortisone is a powerful type of synthetic medication (corticosteroid) that reduces inflammation. It resembles a naturally produced hormone within the body called cortisol, and works by slowing down the immune system.

Cortisone has been used for over 50 years to temporarily treat symptoms related to knee osteoarthritis. Though cortisone injections are used as a treatment for pain, it is not a pain reliever. When the injections reduce pain it is because the synthetic medication has decreased inflammation within the knee. Cortisone is not a cure for osteoarthritis, nor does it alter the course of the disease.

People react differently to Cortisone. Some experience pain relief for days others for months. There really isn’t a method to predict how the powerful drugs will react for any given individual. However, it is clear that if the first couple of shots have little or no effect, that repeated injections will seldom offer relief.  Also, the injections will decrease in effectiveness over time.



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