Hyaluronic Acid Injections
Hyaluronic acid injections offer a highly effective, FDA-approved method for successfully treating mild to moderate osteoarthritis.
They work by lubricating painful joints and promoting optimal function, especially for individuals who have not been able to achieve relief through other conservative measures. They also provide a natural anti-inflammatory effect, reducing pain and often avoiding the need for steroid injections.
Understanding how hyaluronic acid injections work
To understand how hyaluronic acid injections work, you first need to understand the condition they treat: osteoarthritis (OA).
Osteoarthritis is the most common type of arthritis. It’s characterized by the degeneration of cartilage and dysfunction of joint fluid, leading to joint pain, stiffness, tenderness and a loss of flexibility. Without prompt intervention, arthritis is progressive, often worsening over time with further cartilage loss and pain.
Within the body is a naturally-occurring substance, called hyaluronic acid. It works to lubricate your joints, much like a “WD-40,” improving overall joint movement, and protecting your bones from impact. When you have arthritis, the hyaluronic acid surrounding your joints begins to deteriorate. Hyaluronic acid injections can restore this lost fluid and lubrication, so your bones are sufficiently protected.
What to expect during your hyaluronic acid injections
Considered one of the top providers of hyaluronic acid injections Los Angeles has to offer, you can expect a pleasant experience. All of these injections are delivered under state-of-the-art ultrasound guidance to ensure an accurate needle placement with precise dynamic visualization. This frequently results in more accurate needle placement than “blind” injections along with less reported pain.
To begin, we will comfortably drain and remove excess fluid (bursitis) around the joint that may be contributing to your inflammation. Our philosophy is “out with the bad, and in with the good.” For optimal results, you may require more than one treatment as well as ongoing maintenance visits after six months to maintain healthy and active joints.
Once your treatment is complete, you’ll be able to resume your normal daily routine right away. However, you should avoid prolonged standing, running, heavy lifting and other weight bearing activities for about two days. In terms of side effects, you can expect mild stiffness, very minor pain and a temporary buildup of joint fluid, but these effects should disappear fairly quickly. In the meantime, this can be managed by applying ice to the area and avoiding over activity. Most patients experience maximal relief around 4-6 weeks after completing the lubrication injections that typically maintain a benefit for approximately 6 months.
Are hyaluronic acid injections right for you?
Hyaluronic acid injections offer a safe, effective, and minimally-invasive way to manage osteoarthritis – but they aren’t right for every patient. They are ideal for men and women who have mild to moderate osteoarthritis (not severe) and have been unable to achieve relief with exercise, weight loss and physical therapy. They are also an appealing alternative if you want to avoid painkillers and steroid injections. Hyaluronic acid injections can be used along with or in place of PRP injections as well.
Conversely, hyaluronic acid injections aren’t ideal for patients with more advanced osteoarthritis, as these individuals will likely require a more progressive treatment.