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What are joint injections?

If you have a swollen or painful peripheral joint (such as the hip shoulder, elbow, knee, wrist, foot, and ankle) your symptoms can be relieved by injecting a steroid medication into the affected joint to help relieve pain, reduce the inflammation and improve the joint movement. Pain relief after an injection may last for several weeks to many months. The injections may be also repeated if our doctor deems them necessary, as the more long-term benefit may be obtained after subsequent injections.

Peripheral joint injections are performed as an outpatient procedure in our state-of-the-art facilities, with local anesthesia, and require no special preparation. A small needle is placed into the area using fluoroscopic guidance and confirmed with a small amount of radiographic contrast. The precise placement of the needle with imaging guidance allows our doctors at Southwest Spine & Sports in Scottsdale, AZ, to administer a small dose of steroid to the affected joint with minimal side effects.

What are the benefits of joint injections?

At Southwest Spine & Sports, joint injections offer numerous benefits to our patients in Scottsdale, AZ, including:

  • Quick pain relief that can last several months
  • Promoting joint healing by reducing inflammation
  • Helping to alleviate joint pain and stiffness
  • Treatment is minimally invasive, so no surgery is involved
  • Boosting range of motion and overall joint function
  • No special preparation or general anesthesia is needed
  • Fast treatment, taking about 15 minutes per joint
  • Injections can target numerous body areas based on your needs

Am I a Candidate for Joint Injections?

You may be a candidate for joint injections if:

  • You have been diagnosed with arthritis
  • Your disease hasn’t progressed too far

Additionally, these injections can be provided for various areas of the body, including:

  • Neck
  • Shoulder
  • Elbow
  • Wrist
  • Hip
  • Knee
  • Ankle

Who is a candidate for PRP therapy?

Candidates for PRP therapy may be looking to effectively treat an injury or condition without the downtime associated with surgery. These can include sports or repetitive injuries. Growth factors in PRP can also be a more natural alternative to other types of treatment. Results can last for several months, and additional treatments can be provided to help maintain your outcome. During a thorough consultation at Southwest Spine & Sports, our team can evaluate your condition and determine if PRP therapy is ideal for you.

PRP for Joint Pain

Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) therapy is a safe, effective and all-natural way to heal damaged joints, including shoulders, knees, hips, ankles, fingers, and more. PRP consists of a small sample of your own blood, spun in a centrifuge to concentrate the platelets and then injected into the injured area. Medical research and intensive studies are leading the way to the tremendous benefits offered by PRP for patients suffering from low back pain, with the goal of enhancing the body’s ability to naturally heal itself. Q

How are Joint Injections done?

You will be asked to lie nearly flat on your stomach. Under local anesthesia, using x-ray guidance, a small needle is positioned into the facet joint or along the facet joint nerves. A small injection of dye may be used to check the positioning. Medication is then injected (usually a mixture of anti-inflammatory steroids and long-acting anesthetic). Each injection takes about 15 minutes. Multiple levels on either one or both sides may be performed in the same session, depending upon your symptoms.

Experience Restorative Healing

Facet injection is performed to help diagnose and/or treat pain related to disease or injury of the posterior joints of the spine. Injection of these joints is an accurate and definitive way to diagnose facet joint pain syndrome because certain joints may appear abnormal but not cause pain, and conversely, the problem joints may appear nearly normal.

Learn more about Joint Injections therapy with this informative brochure.

What Should I Expect After Joint Injections?

You may experience numbness and/or relief from your pain for up to six hours after the injection. This is due to the long-acting local anesthetic that was used to numb the treatment area. Because of this numbness, you may want to have someone drive you home from your appointment. While there is typically little to no downtime after a joint injection, your usual symptoms may return and feel briefly worse than usual for a day or two as the joint reacts to the steroid. Some may experience bruising and/or soreness at the injection site. The beneficial effects of the steroid injected usually require 2 – 3 days to begin, and it may take as long as a week to reach optimal effectiveness. If the injection blocked your pain effectively, but only for a short time, we may suggest additional injections or a procedure that offers more permanent relief, such as radiofrequency thermocoagulation.

Get Relief For Joint pain

This injection is often the first step in treating stubborn joint pain. It can be used to alleviate pain in the ankle, knee, hip, shoulder, elbow, or wrist joints. Learn more by contacting Southwest Spine & Sports in Scottsdale, AZ, to schedule your initial consultation with our skilled team.


Fluoroscopic Guided Steroid Injection for Knee Pain

Facet Joint Injections

Sacroiliac Joint Steroid Injection

Ultrasound-Guided Injections for Shoulder Pain

Joint Injections FAQs

Facet joints are located on the back of the spine on each side where one vertebra slightly overlaps the adjacent vertebrae. They guide and allow the complicated movements of the spine.

Facet joint syndrome involves a constellation of symptoms resulting in diffuse pains that do not fit a clear nerve root pattern. These pains are typically worsened with cold, damp weather and movement of the spine, such as standing, walking, and turning in bed.

While you may feel slight pressure or discomfort, most patients don’t find the procedure painful. The doctor will be interested in how this discomfort compares to your usual pain symptoms and monitor you to ensure you stay comfortable.

As with any procedure, there are some inherent risks, although most of these are minimal. Common risks include but are not limited to bruising, bleeding, headaches, and irritation of a nerve or nerve injury, including paralysis, numbness, and weakness. Risks also include infection or reactions to the medications, which may cause breathing difficulties and cardiac difficulties, which may lead to death. Serious risks and complications are extremely rare, however.

It depends on the cause of your joint pain, your health, and your body’s response to the injections. On average, most patients can expect the beneficial effects of the steroid injection to take about 2 – 3 days to begin, and it may take as long as a week.

Joint Injections Blogs


Our Medical Team | 11/23/2023

Is joint pain interfering with your ability to enjoy everyday life? Osteoarthritis could be responsible, but we can help.


Our Medical Team | 03/28/2023

PRP therapy can improve joint function by stimulating the healing response, and reducing inflammation, aches, and pains.


Michael Wolff, MD | 11/30/2021

Regenerative therapies are available to help you manage many chronic pain-related concerns.


Our Medical Team | 08/19/2023

Dr. Wolff specializes in diagnosing and treating chronic lower back pain, offering personalized treatment options to address the underlying causes.

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The Discseel®

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“I have suffered with Plantar Fasciitis for 7 years. I have had steriod injections, physical thereby, rest, and a bunch of other treatments. None have worked. That was until I met Dr. Wolff and his team, including..."



“Dr. Wolff is such an amazing provider always compassionate care. I been seeing Dr. Wolff and his team to treat my Chronic Migraines hands down would refer his clinic and Botox method to get your life back. Thank you..."



"Sheila at Southwest Spine & Sports makes a “bad thing” a little less miserable. I’ve had disc issues since 2004. I continue to struggle with the best method to manage the pain that is associated with lower back issues..."



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"Dear Dr. Wolff, I wanted to thank you for taking care of my frozen shoulder. It has been almost 4 weeks since my injection and I have experienced significant improvement. My day-to-day comfort has improved a lot..."

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