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Old 05-02-2019, 03:37 AM
 
Location: Southern New Hampshire
7,108 posts, read 12,426,670 times
Reputation: 21081

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So I'm leaving on Sunday May 12th to go to the UK with my students and did NOT want to repeat last year's experience in Europe (preparing for this year's trip), which was that I could not walk without pain -- which did not work well at my seminar in France, which required hours of walking every day (they hadn't told us that in advance ).

I finally gave up on the pain getting better and went (back) to my doctor. They did x-rays and found that I have "advanced osteoarthritis" in my left knee. (My right knee is generally OK for now.) I have a family history of arthritis AND ran on pavement for 20 years (the best thing EVER for my mental health, but not for my knees ), so the diagnosis was not surprising.

Over the past week or two, the pain had been excruciating, especially at night -- I would take 4 ibuprofen tablets at "lights out," then wake up 4-5 hours later because I felt like someone was stabbing my knee with a knife. Yes, HORRIBLE, INTENSE pain while SLEEPING!! Needless to say it was frustrating beyond belief.

Anyway, I got the cortisone shot yesterday morning (my PA was great -- I felt a tiny bit of pressure as the needle went in but otherwise I didn't feel the shot at all). Yesterday evening I was walking downstairs and realized I could bend my left knee without pain (MUCH greater range of motion). Last night I woke up in the middle of the night ONLY because I had to go to the bathroom -- the stabbing pain was absent. So the cortisone shot is already working.

From what I've read and what my PA said, I can expect a bit more improvement over the next couple of days. I don't want to get my hopes up as I DO still have some pain, but it's already much better than it was pre-shot. What I'm hoping for is enough lessening of pain so that I can easily do housework, do some gardening, walk, bike, and do other exercises because for me, that is THE best weight control "method" (my everyday diet is pretty good already).

I am curious as to what others' experiences have been RIGHT AFTER the shot and over the next few weeks? (And PLEASE, let's not have this degenerate into a discussion of how bad "traditional medicine" is or how doctors are only out for themselves etc.!) Thanks in advance!

Last edited by karen_in_nh_2012; 05-02-2019 at 03:50 AM.. Reason: fix typo!
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Old 05-02-2019, 08:54 AM
Status: "Loved my 1927 Craftsman Bungalow!" (set 7 days ago)
 
Location: Virginia
3,811 posts, read 1,924,445 times
Reputation: 10419
I haven't had a cortisone shot in my knee, but had one in my left hip for crippling bursitis. I couldn't get out of a chair or a car seat without "crabbing" around for at least 15 minutes afterwards, and the pain was pretty much constant. I had my shot on a Friday afternoon (it did hurt - I swear the doctor used a horse needle, lol) and the next morning when I got out of bed I literally collapsed on the floor. However, after managing to crawl down the stairs and resting on the couch for a few hours, I felt like I could go out and go to a dance party. It was seriously that wonderful and the effect lasted for years. I will get occasional twinges of bursitis now, but it's been a lot of years since the shot too. I hope your experience is as good as mine was!
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Old 05-02-2019, 10:25 AM
 
Location: Southern New Hampshire
7,108 posts, read 12,426,670 times
Reputation: 21081
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bungalove View Post
I haven't had a cortisone shot in my knee, but had one in my left hip for crippling bursitis. I couldn't get out of a chair or a car seat without "crabbing" around for at least 15 minutes afterwards, and the pain was pretty much constant. I had my shot on a Friday afternoon (it did hurt - I swear the doctor used a horse needle, lol) and the next morning when I got out of bed I literally collapsed on the floor. However, after managing to crawl down the stairs and resting on the couch for a few hours, I felt like I could go out and go to a dance party. It was seriously that wonderful and the effect lasted for years. I will get occasional twinges of bursitis now, but it's been a lot of years since the shot too. I hope your experience is as good as mine was!
Well, that's an encouraging reply -- thanks! Unfortunately today I still have the same level of pain doing certain things (like standing after sitting for a while, which could be as little as 30 minutes) -- it takes a minute for me to "shake off" the knee pain. Basically no difference from before, although I HOPE it will gradually get better over the next few days.

Walking downstairs is definitely better, and I was ecstatic not to have the horrendous stabbing pains overnight last night, but I am a bit bummed that there hasn't been as much improvement (yet) as I expected ... or hoped for.
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Old 05-02-2019, 11:07 AM
 
Location: SW Florida
9,602 posts, read 6,863,300 times
Reputation: 13825
Quote:
Originally Posted by karen_in_nh_2012 View Post
So I'm leaving on Sunday May 12th to go to the UK with my students and did NOT want to repeat last year's experience in Europe (preparing for this year's trip), which was that I could not walk without pain -- which did not work well at my seminar in France, which required hours of walking every day (they hadn't told us that in advance ).

I finally gave up on the pain getting better and went (back) to my doctor. They did x-rays and found that I have "advanced osteoarthritis" in my left knee. (My right knee is generally OK for now.) I have a family history of arthritis AND ran on pavement for 20 years (the best thing EVER for my mental health, but not for my knees ), so the diagnosis was not surprising.

Over the past week or two, the pain had been excruciating, especially at night -- I would take 4 ibuprofen tablets at "lights out," then wake up 4-5 hours later because I felt like someone was stabbing my knee with a knife. Yes, HORRIBLE, INTENSE pain while SLEEPING!! Needless to say it was frustrating beyond belief.

Anyway, I got the cortisone shot yesterday morning (my PA was great -- I felt a tiny bit of pressure as the needle went in but otherwise I didn't feel the shot at all). Yesterday evening I was walking downstairs and realized I could bend my left knee without pain (MUCH greater range of motion). Last night I woke up in the middle of the night ONLY because I had to go to the bathroom -- the stabbing pain was absent. So the cortisone shot is already working.

From what I've read and what my PA said, I can expect a bit more improvement over the next couple of days. I don't want to get my hopes up as I DO still have some pain, but it's already much better than it was pre-shot. What I'm hoping for is enough lessening of pain so that I can easily do housework, do some gardening, walk, bike, and do other exercises because for me, that is THE best weight control "method" (my everyday diet is pretty good already).

I am curious as to what others' experiences have been RIGHT AFTER the shot and over the next few weeks? (And PLEASE, let's not have this degenerate into a discussion of how bad "traditional medicine" is or how doctors are only out for themselves etc.!) Thanks in advance!
My husband has lousy knees ( between the OA degeneration and results of damage from old wrestling injuries) and he used to get cortisone injections in his knees periodically. From what I can recall, he said that it took a few days for the maximum pain-mitigating effects to be felt, but these lasted him a few months, maybe a bit longer. He got the injections approximately every 6-9 months for a number of years, till they told him no more due to the potential damage/degeneration of the remaining cartilege caused by cortisone. He really needs knee replacements but won't get them, he wears knee braces nearly all the time and says they help with the pain and stability of his knees.

Hopefully your knee will be much better going forward, at least long enough to take your trip, and for some time afterwards.

But speaking of knee-braces, maybe this was part of your plans already, but I'd suggest that you include a good knee brace when you pack for that trip. You might find that comes in handy if you plan to do a lot of walking, or you experience some pain or instability of the knee when you're walking. A cane, just in case, might help too.
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Old 05-02-2019, 11:12 AM
 
Location: God's Country
5,126 posts, read 3,399,872 times
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At age 72, had the knee drained and a shot of "cortisone" and, three years later, the problem has never recurred


However, the main reason for the healthful condition of the knee in my opinion has been the discontinuance of certain activities. I was running up and down my hill 45-90 minutes a day, 5-6 days a week. Going downhill exerts a lot of gravitational force. I replaced that workout the day after the shot with low impact movements on a stepper and elliptical. Solved the problem.


Having said all that I've had several shoulder injections that had no beneficial effect.
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Old 05-02-2019, 11:28 AM
 
2,617 posts, read 1,484,216 times
Reputation: 3096
I had a horrible experience with them. I had three and after each experienced a cortisone flare which resulted in such severe pain I had to get on an opiate until it subsided. I will never have one again and listed it as an allergy per my ortho. I wound up having surtfery instead.

That said I am the one who has really weird reactions to otherwise routine meds and procedures. I would still do it and it works great for many.
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Old 05-02-2019, 01:49 PM
 
Location: Bella Vista, Ark
71,214 posts, read 82,607,389 times
Reputation: 40989
Quote:
Originally Posted by karen_in_nh_2012 View Post
So I'm leaving on Sunday May 12th to go to the UK with my students and did NOT want to repeat last year's experience in Europe (preparing for this year's trip), which was that I could not walk without pain -- which did not work well at my seminar in France, which required hours of walking every day (they hadn't told us that in advance ).

I finally gave up on the pain getting better and went (back) to my doctor. They did x-rays and found that I have "advanced osteoarthritis" in my left knee. (My right knee is generally OK for now.) I have a family history of arthritis AND ran on pavement for 20 years (the best thing EVER for my mental health, but not for my knees ), so the diagnosis was not surprising.

Over the past week or two, the pain had been excruciating, especially at night -- I would take 4 ibuprofen tablets at "lights out," then wake up 4-5 hours later because I felt like someone was stabbing my knee with a knife. Yes, HORRIBLE, INTENSE pain while SLEEPING!! Needless to say it was frustrating beyond belief.

Anyway, I got the cortisone shot yesterday morning (my PA was great -- I felt a tiny bit of pressure as the needle went in but otherwise I didn't feel the shot at all). Yesterday evening I was walking downstairs and realized I could bend my left knee without pain (MUCH greater range of motion). Last night I woke up in the middle of the night ONLY because I had to go to the bathroom -- the stabbing pain was absent. So the cortisone shot is already working.

From what I've read and what my PA said, I can expect a bit more improvement over the next couple of days. I don't want to get my hopes up as I DO still have some pain, but it's already much better than it was pre-shot. What I'm hoping for is enough lessening of pain so that I can easily do housework, do some gardening, walk, bike, and do other exercises because for me, that is THE best weight control "method" (my everyday diet is pretty good already).

I am curious as to what others' experiences have been RIGHT AFTER the shot and over the next few weeks? (And PLEASE, let's not have this degenerate into a discussion of how bad "traditional medicine" is or how doctors are only out for themselves etc.!) Thanks in advance!
Similar story to tell: it too, was my left knee. The first shot worked wonders. I share I could feel an improvement within an hour or so. It worked for at least a few months to some degree. The next one not so well: then I switched to the shot that works 6 months: NOT. I went back to the cortisone and after one more shot I decided surgery was the best route for me. That was about 4 years ago and have never regretted it for a minute.
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Old 05-02-2019, 02:09 PM
 
Location: on the wind
6,385 posts, read 2,557,034 times
Reputation: 21734
Quote:
Originally Posted by karen_in_nh_2012 View Post
From what I've read and what my PA said, I can expect a bit more improvement over the next couple of days. I don't want to get my hopes up as I DO still have some pain, but it's already much better than it was pre-shot. What I'm hoping for is enough lessening of pain so that I can easily do housework, do some gardening, walk, bike, and do other exercises because for me, that is THE best weight control "method" (my everyday diet is pretty good already).

I am curious as to what others' experiences have been RIGHT AFTER the shot and over the next few weeks? (And PLEASE, let's not have this degenerate into a discussion of how bad "traditional medicine" is or how doctors are only out for themselves etc.!) Thanks in advance!
I've done it once on a knee when pain from my OA had really flared up. It helped temporarily, but I also modified activity so it might be hard to say how much change was due to the cortisone alone. Also had a shot in a hip before eventually replacing the joint. No benefit at all. According to my doc so much can depend on how advanced your arthritis is and whether there's anything else going on in that joint (undiagnosed tendon/ligament/meniscus injuries or scarring from them, congenital defect contributing to excessive wear and tear, bone spurs, etc). The more advanced the OA, the less likely you'll see as much benefit. The cortisone isn't really halting or reversing the arthritis process itself, just reducing inflammation which relieves pain. Inflammation can have multiple causes. Shot or not, OA will continue along it's merry way. It makes sense that subsequent shots have diminishing benefits because of that.

All this being said, you know this is anecdotal right? Hope you enjoy your trip!

Last edited by Parnassia; 05-02-2019 at 02:39 PM..
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Old 05-02-2019, 02:23 PM
 
1,422 posts, read 320,262 times
Reputation: 2410
Quote:
Originally Posted by karen_in_nh_2012 View Post
I am curious as to what others' experiences have been RIGHT AFTER the shot and over the next few weeks? (And PLEASE, let's not have this degenerate into a discussion of how bad "traditional medicine" is or how doctors are only out for themselves etc.!) Thanks in advance!
My wife had been having problems - not quite as severe as yours, but close. She would wake up several times per night in pain as did you. She finally did the cortisone shot and 2 days later she was back to skiing. It made a world of difference.

Then, her knee got worse - but it was a minor stress fracture of her tibial plateau. This can happen from running, skiing, etc. Her doctor says to do whatever she wants so long as it doesn't hurt and she should be healed about 6 weeks after the end of ski season. She's on the treadmill right now.
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Old 05-02-2019, 02:46 PM
 
Location: Maryland
451 posts, read 922,250 times
Reputation: 892
Quote:
Originally Posted by karen_in_nh_2012 View Post
So I'm leaving on Sunday May 12th to go to the UK with my students and did NOT want to repeat last year's experience in Europe (preparing for this year's trip), which was that I could not walk without pain -- which did not work well at my seminar in France, which required hours of walking every day (they hadn't told us that in advance ).

I finally gave up on the pain getting better and went (back) to my doctor. They did x-rays and found that I have "advanced osteoarthritis" in my left knee. (My right knee is generally OK for now.) I have a family history of arthritis AND ran on pavement for 20 years (the best thing EVER for my mental health, but not for my knees ), so the diagnosis was not surprising.

Over the past week or two, the pain had been excruciating, especially at night -- I would take 4 ibuprofen tablets at "lights out," then wake up 4-5 hours later because I felt like someone was stabbing my knee with a knife. Yes, HORRIBLE, INTENSE pain while SLEEPING!! Needless to say it was frustrating beyond belief.

Anyway, I got the cortisone shot yesterday morning (my PA was great -- I felt a tiny bit of pressure as the needle went in but otherwise I didn't feel the shot at all). Yesterday evening I was walking downstairs and realized I could bend my left knee without pain (MUCH greater range of motion). Last night I woke up in the middle of the night ONLY because I had to go to the bathroom -- the stabbing pain was absent. So the cortisone shot is already working.

From what I've read and what my PA said, I can expect a bit more improvement over the next couple of days. I don't want to get my hopes up as I DO still have some pain, but it's already much better than it was pre-shot. What I'm hoping for is enough lessening of pain so that I can easily do housework, do some gardening, walk, bike, and do other exercises because for me, that is THE best weight control "method" (my everyday diet is pretty good already).

I am curious as to what others' experiences have been RIGHT AFTER the shot and over the next few weeks? (And PLEASE, let's not have this degenerate into a discussion of how bad "traditional medicine" is or how doctors are only out for themselves etc.!) Thanks in advance!

When I moved to Boulder in 2004 I had already undergone a number of arthritis related operations. There are a lot of world class athletes that live and train in Boulder, many Olympic athletes as well.
I was recommended to go the Boulder Sports Medicine Center as my shoulder was really bothering me. A PA, not an actual doctor was treating most of the world class athletes. He told me he was going to give me a cortisone shot and that if it lasted a day or two I would need an operation as it implied that what I had wasn't an inflammation. He also said that if the shot lasted a month or so I didn't need an operation.


My shot lasted less than a day. I had my surgery and it's been fine ever since. I always keep that in mind regarding cortisone shots.
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