Hyaluronic acid injection is a medical procedure in which a gel-like substance called hyaluronic acid is injected into a joint affected by conditions such as osteoarthritis. This treatment may come into consideration if you experience joint pain, stiffness, or reduced mobility. The intra-articular (straight into the joint capsule) injection aims to supplement the natural hyaluronic acid found in your joints, which tends to decrease in people with certain joint disorders and as we age. By replenishing hyaluronic acid levels, the injection helps lubricate your joint, reduce friction, and alleviate pain.
This procedure is usually performed by an orthopaedic specialist and can provide relief for a period of time.
Howdoes hyaluronic acid injection work?
When you undergo a hyaluronic acid injection, the procedure works by introducing a gel-like substance called hyaluronic acid directly into the affected joint. This supplemental hyaluronic acid serves multiple purposes.
Firstly, it helps improve the lubrication within the joint, reducing friction, and facilitating smoother movement. It also acts as a shock absorber, providing cushioning for your joint and minimising the impact on surrounding tissues. This injection also aims to decrease inflammation within your joint, which can contribute to pain and stiffness.
Overall, hyaluronic acid injections can help to restore and maintain the balance of your joint’s natural lubricating properties, reducing discomfort, and improving joint function.
At Artisan Sports and Orthopaedic Surgery, we offer the well-established Synvisc-One and Hyalubrix brands of hyaluronic acid – indicated specifically for knee, shoulder, ankle, and hip hyaluronic intra-articular joint injections.
Benefitsof hyaluronic acid injection
Improved joint function
Delayed need for surgery
Minimal side effects
What conditions can hyaluronic acid injection treat?
Hyaluronic acid injections can be used to treat the following conditions:
Arthritis:arthritis such as osteoarthritisdegenerative joint disease, and rheumatoid arthritis an inflammatory and autoimmune disease, can be treated using hyaluronic acid injections, thus reducing inflammation and providing pain relief.
When it comes to orthopaedic applications, a hyaluronic acid injection can yield several potential outcomes. If you are experiencing joint pain or discomfort, the injection will be able to provide relief by lubricating the affected area and reducing friction between your bones. This can lead to improved joint mobility and decreased pain during movement.
Hyaluronic acid also has the potential to reduce inflammation in the joint, which may further alleviate discomfort.
Results will vary from person to person, depending on the treatment area, severity of the issue, and your overall health. Your orthopaedist can give you a better idea of what to expect based on your individual needs and circumstances.
How many treatment sessions are needed?
The number of treatment sessions for hyaluronic acid injections in orthopaedics can vary depending on several factors. This includes the specific condition being treated, the severity of the issue, and your individual response to the injections.
Typically, a course of treatment consists of multiple sessions spaced out over a period of time. You might undergo a series of injections, ranging from 3 to 5 sessions and administered at specific intervals. This allows for the gradual build-up of hyaluronic acid in the joint and optimal results. However, it is essential to remember that the exact number of sessions needed will be determined by your orthopaedic specialist, who will assess your progress and adjust your treatment plan accordingly to ensure the best possible outcome.
Your orthopaedist will be able to provide you with a bespoke treatment plan, tailored to your needs and requirements.
Dr Puah KL is our Senior Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon at Artisan Sports & Orthopaedic Surgery. He used to serve the sports service of Singapore General Hospital - the highest volume trauma centre for orthopaedics in Singapore.