If you are experiencing pain, and swelling or stiffness in joints, your doctor might refer you for image-guided pain therapy treatment. This treatment involves a variety of procedures that are commonly used to treat symptoms in joints like ankles, elbows, hips, knees, spine, shoulders, thumbs, and wrists.
Using a type of continuous X-ray, called fluoroscopy, or ultrasound guidance, Mayfair Diagnostics’ experienced pain therapy team helps treat your symptoms by precisely injecting medication through a small needle into a joint, or soft tissues.
These are very safe procedures, as they are performed in a sterile manner according to provincial guidelines. Only in very rare circumstances will a patient develop an infection or an allergy to a substance in the product. The booking staff will review your allergies with you prior to your appointment.
The most common side effect of an injection is mild pain or bruising around the area. Pain may temporarily worsen due to inflammation during the first 24-48 hours. Over-the-counter pain medications or icing the area can help. You will be advised to leave the Band-Aid on, keep the treatment area clean, and avoid showering for the first 24 hours.
For the first 48 hours after an injection, it’s recommended that you avoid bathtubs, hot tubs, and pools. For most injections you will be advised to avoid strenuous activity and lifting for 48 hours.
After a spine injection, for the first 24 hours you will need to avoid driving and taking regular anti-inflammatory medication (i.e., ibuprofen/Advil), if possible. A feeling of heaviness, numbness, or tingling in one or both legs is normal and could last for 4-6 hours after the injection. We advise avoiding strenuous activity and lifting for 3-5 days after your procedure.
You may resume physiotherapy after one week, but be mindful of your pain and stop if it hurts too much. It’s also a good idea to notify your physiotherapist that you have had this injection so they can modify your exercises if necessary.
For certain procedures, we may recommend a follow-up ultrasound six months after the treatment for reassessment, and to plan additional procedures if required.
Results from these treatments may last from weeks to years depending on the joint or body part involved, severity of the disease, and the cause of your pain. Some patients get complete relief that is permanent, while others have no significant effect and other treatments may need to be considered.
Long-term effects of repeated cortisone injections may include weakening of muscle, tendons, and local skin changes, so, to avoid this, we will make suggestions for alternate treatments or supportive care when repeated cortisone injections have failed to relieve symptoms.
There will be pressure or very short-lived pain when administering the local anesthetic, which should then subside. However, pain perception depends greatly on your pain threshold and the degree of inflammation of the area involved. Most patients find the procedure tolerable and painless. Mayfair’s expert team has extensive experience in performing these procedures and do our very best to make them as comfortable as possible.
Image-guided pain therapy procedures must be requested by a health care practitioner. For muscle and soft tissue concerns, an ultrasound is usually requested first to determine the cause of symptoms, possibly in conjunction with an X-ray which can look at the bones and joint spaces near the area of concern.
Once the cause has been identified and treatment options reviewed, an image-guided pain therapy procedure may be recommended by us or requested by your practitioner. You will need a requisition from your physician or therapist. Once we have received the requisition we will then review it and contact you to confirm the area and type of injection requested, and to book the appointment.
Cortisone injections, tendon calcification and needling fenestration therapies are fully covered under the Alberta Health Care Insurance plan. Some of our pain therapy services include a cost for the medication (Botox, hyaluronic acid), which is charged at the manufacturer’s cost, or a cost for the entire treatment (platelet-rich plasma, prolotherapy injections).
For a full list of pain treatment procedures, please visit our services page.