Answering Common Questions about Viscosupplementation for Osteoarthritis

Living with osteoarthritis can be challenging, especially when it affects weight-bearing joints like the knees. Thankfully, medical advancements have introduced various treatment options to alleviate pain and improve joint function. One such treatment gaining popularity is knee gel injections, also known as viscosupplementation. We’ll delve into some frequently asked questions surrounding knee gel injections and provide insightful answers to help you make an informed decision about your osteoarthritis treatment.

What are Knee Gel Injections and Viscosupplementation?

Knee gel injections, or viscosupplementation, involve the injection of a gel-like substance into the knee joint to provide lubrication and cushioning. The gel, typically made of hyaluronic acid, mimics the natural joint fluid found in healthy knees. The Joint Relief Institute carries over ten different types of gels for the viscosupplementation procedure. This procedure aims to reduce pain, inflammation, and improve joint mobility for individuals with knee osteoarthritis.

How do Knee Gel Injections Work?

When knee osteoarthritis occurs, the joint fluid’s viscosity and cushioning properties diminish, leading to friction, inflammation, and discomfort. Viscosupplementation works by replenishing the hyaluronic acid in the knee joint, restoring its lubricating and shock-absorbing capabilities. By improving the quality of joint fluid, knee gel injections help reduce pain and enhance joint function.

Who is a Suitable Candidate for Knee Gel Injections?

Knee gel injections are typically recommended for individuals with knee osteoarthritis symptoms that haven’t responded well to conservative treatments like over-the-counter pain medications, physical therapy, or corticosteroid injections. It is important to consult with a licensed provider who can evaluate your condition and determine whether viscosupplementation is appropriate for you. At The Joint Relief Institute, our providers will be able to do this evaluation during your first consultation.

What can I Expect During the Knee Gel Injection Procedure?

The knee gel injection procedure is a relatively simple outpatient process that can be performed in a doctor’s office. Your provider will clean the injection site, apply a local anesthetic if necessary, and then insert a needle into the joint space. Using a technique called fluoroscopy, the gel-like substance will be injected directly and accurately into the knee joint. The entire procedure usually takes about 15-20 minutes, and you can return to normal activities right after!

Are Knee Gel Injections Painful?

The knee gel injection procedure is generally well-tolerated, and any discomfort is usually minimal. The Joint Relief Institute uses a numbing cold spray and lidocaine so that patients don’t experience anything more than a small pinch.

How Long Does it Take to Experience the Benefits?

Viscosupplementation knee injections provide immediate pain relief in three ways. Firstly, the injection quickly soothes distressed cartilage, offering instant relief. Secondly, it delivers a powerful anti-inflammatory effect that continues to work over the next few days, alleviating knee inflammation. Lastly, the gel forms a cushioning pillow inside the joint, reducing friction and providing long-term relief. Experience youthful, pain-free knees for up to several years with this rejuvenating treatment.

What are the Potential Side Effects of Knee Gel Injections?

Knee gel injections are generally safe, and serious complications are rare. However, like any medical procedure, there can be some potential side effects. These can include localized pain, swelling, redness, or warmth around the injection site. In rare cases, an allergic reaction or infection may occur. It’s crucial to discuss any concerns or pre-existing conditions with your healthcare provider to ensure the treatment is safe for you.

Conclusion

Knee gel injections, or viscosupplementation, offer a promising treatment option for individuals suffering from knee osteoarthritis. By replenishing the joint fluid with a gel-like substance, these injections can reduce pain, inflammation, and improve joint mobility. The Joint Relief Institute takes extensive measures to ensure that this procedure is completed with the utmost care and accuracy. 

If you have been struggling with knee osteoarthritis and conservative treatments have not provided adequate relief, knee gel injections may be worth considering. Consult with a Patient Care Specialist to discuss your individual condition and determine the best treatment approach for you.

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