What is a Hip Joint Injection?

Hip joints join the pelvis to the upper leg allowing movement and contributing to weight-bearing. The joints can cause pain through a variety of causes such as osteoarthritis, inflammation or tears to the surrounding soft tissue structures. The injection can be used to confirm the source of pain and has the potential to give longer lasting relief.

What does it involve?

• You will be lying on your back for the procedure, which usually takes 5 – 10 minutes. A fine needles is passed through the groin toward the joint under x-ray guidance.
• Once the needle is confirmed to be in the joint, the injection takes place.

What is Injected?

• A small quantity of dye (which can be seen on the xray images) is used to confirm that the injection is into the joint.
• Local Anaesthetic – injected into the joint.
• Steroid – injected into the joint.
• Hyaluronic acid – injected into the joint on occasions.

Does it Work?

The injection may be used primarily to diagnose the source of your pain. The local anaesthetic numbs the joint so if the hip joint is the source of pain, you should experience significant pain relief within 15 minutes of the injection, which may last for a few hours. Again, IF the hip joint is a source of pain then there may be some prolonged pain relief from the steroid or hyaluronic acid. Often the pain returns within days, weeks or a few months after the procedure in which case it may be repeated or you may be considered for further investigation or surgical treatment.

Risks and Side Effects:

Due to the procedure:

• Infection – rare.
• More discomfort for the first few days after your injection.
• Bruising to the injection area.
• Leg numbness and weakness are very rare side effects.
• Temporary difficulty taking weight through the injected side.
• Allergy to injected medication.

Due to the injected steroid:

• Facial flushing for a few days.
• Temporary alteration of your usual menstrual cycle (females).
• Temporary increase in your sugar levels (diabetics).

What Happens on the Day of My Appointment?

• You can eat and drink.
• Take all your tablets as normal.
• You will be asked to sign a consent form. Mr Aslam will be able to answer any questions you may have at this time.
• You will need to arrive at the radiology department 15mins prior to your appointment.
• After you have had your procedure, you will need to stay with us for about 30 minutes before you can go home.

You must NOT drive home or go home on public transport. You are allowed to go home by taxi. Please arrange for someone to collect you after the injection.

After Your Injection

• Take things easy for the rest of the day. Do not do any excessive exercise or heavy work for the first few days.
• Continue to take your pain tablets till you notice any improvement in your symptoms.

After the injection you will be asked to take home a pain diary and book a follow up appointment from 6-12 weeks.

Important Information

Please inform me if you are diabetic, have a cough or cold or have any kind of infection.
You must inform us if you are taking any of the following tablets – antibiotics, aspirin, warfarin or clopidogrel before attending as some of these may need to be stopped some days before.

Information for females - We will need to know the start date of your last menstrual period due to the use of x-ray equipment. If you think you might be pregnant, contact the Day Unit for advice.