Steroid injections are an effective treatment for arthritis

Steroid injections may be an effective way to treat patients with hip arthritis, according to the largest such study ever conducted.

Research from Keele University examined the use of corticosteroid injections to treat osteoarthritis of the hip (O.A.), and found that these treatments had a rapid and lasting impact for patients, giving them better mobility and greater pain reduction over a six-month period than those who did not.

The researchers recruited adults with O.A. being processed within the Midlands Partnership NHS Trust Foundation Hospitals. All participants received advice and support. Participants were randomly divided into three groups to receive no injection, an injection of corticosteroid and local anesthetic, or an injection of local anesthetic only.

Participants were asked to report their progress at intervals of two weeks, two months, four months, and six months, providing a rating of their pain from 0 to 10 at each interval, as well as indicating how they could work.

The researchers found that those who received the steroid injection had significantly reduced pain levels as well as improved ability to function for 6 months.

Publish their findings in the British medical journalresearchers Dr Zoe Paskins, Professor Edward Roddy and Professor Christian Mallen of Keele University Medical School say the results highlight the treatment’s potential to treat moderate to severe forms O.A. in the hip and provide more treatment choices for patients for whom treatment options are often limited.

Lead author Dr Paskins said: “So often people with hip arthritis tell us that they think their treatment options are really limited. Currently, some people can access steroid injections, but this is subject to local variation and a “postcode lottery”. We hope these results mean that national and international organizations will recommend steroid injections as a treatment option and allow more people with osteoarthritis of the hip to be offered the choice of steroid injections.

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