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Local steroid injections

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What are local steroid injections and why are they prescribed?

Steroids reduce inflammation. They can be given as tablets or injections. Read more >

How do I have local steroid injections and how long do they take to work?

Steroid injections are given by your healthcare professional when necessary. Short-acting soluble steroids can give relief within hours and should last for at least a week. The longer acting, less soluble steroids may take around a week to become effective but can ease your symptoms for 2 months or longer. Read more >

What are the possible risks and side-effects of local steroid injections?

Side-effects of local steroid injections can include a temporary flare-up of joint pain, infection, changes in your mood and thinning of the skin. Read more >

Can local steroid injections affect other medicines and treatments?

You can take other medicines with local steroid injections. However, if you’re taking a drug that thins the blood (an anticoagulant) such as warfarin, you may need an extra blood test to make sure that your blood is not too thin to have the injection. This is because of the risk of bleeding into the joint.


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Can I drink alcohol if I've been given local steroid injections?

There's no particular reason to avoid alcohol after local steroid injections.


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Can local steroid injections affect fertility, pregnancy or breastfeeding?

Current guidelines state that steroids are not harmful in pregnancy or breastfeeding so single steroid injections shouldn't affect fertility, pregnancy or breastfeeding and can be useful treatments in this situation. If you're pregnant or breastfeeding, talk to your doctor before having a local steroid injection.

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