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Ankle Injections in NYC

Ankle pain can hobble you, forcing you out of your favorite sport. Talk to the pain experts at the Sports Injury and Pain Institute of NY about your options, including a steroid injection for ankle pain. With a steroid, injection ankle feels less pain and is less inflamed. It’s safe, too; most cortisone injections in ankle side effects are minor and temporary.

Ankle Injection in NYCYour ankles and knees are the joints that have to carry your weight, whether you’re walking, running, jumping, or playing your favorite sport. Ankle pain and knee pain, therefore, are conditions to take seriously. Since your ankles are so much smaller and more flexible than your knees, they’re more prone to injuries. Protect them!

But when you’re experiencing ankle pain, seek out your pain doctor in NY. And while surgery is an option for extreme cases, a steroid injection for ankle pain can set you on the path to regaining your step.

Reasons to Get a Steroid Injection for Ankle Pain

As long as you haven’t broken a bone or torn a tendon, you may be a candidate to receive steroid injection ankle treatments. Some reasons your doctor recommends a steroid injection for ankle pain include:

All these conditions cause ankle pain. Some cause painful inflammation. Your steroid injection for ankle pain leads to less inflammation, which means less pain. It not only eases the pain you’re experiencing, but it also helps your ankle heal — because when you’re not fighting pain all the time, your body can concentrate on getting better.

The First Steps for Treating Ankle Pain

The first step is to get an accurate diagnosis. Your top-rated sports injury specialist gives you a physical exam to determine the exact cause of your pain. If needed, you undergo x-rays or an MRI, but often your doctor can diagnose your condition without them.

The first treatment options are often rest, alternating hot and cold, compression and elevation. You can take over-the-counter non-steroidal anti-inflammatories for pain and swelling. If these at-home remedies don’t produce the desired results, a steroid injection for ankle pain may be the next step.

Receiving a Steroid Injection in Your Ankle

The procedure is performed in our New York City pain relief clinic. It takes no more than 15 minutes. The injection follows a step-by-step process:

  1. You’re made comfortable, perhaps with your ankle on an x-ray table, with the injection spot on top. Your doctor may need to use the x-ray machine to get real-time fluoroscopic images of your ankle. He uses those images to guide the needle.
  2. When the needle is in place, the physician injects the medicine right where it’s needed, right where you feel the pain. Your doctor may have to put the medicine in multiple places, which surround and coats the problem area.
  3. Once the last injection is made, you can relax while you recover under observation for a short time to see how the medication worked.

If successful, you should feel an immediate reduction in pain. The injection contains a small amount of local anesthetic, which acts right away. But when it wears off in several hours, your pain may return. That’s normal. The steroid medication needs a couple of days to really start working. In the meantime, your doctor may give you some pain medication to get you through the first few days after your injection.

I was in a lot of pain. A little while later, the injection started to work, and I now feel much better. Many thanks to Dr. Melepura!

Nancy Otis

Cortisone Injection in Ankle Side Effects

There aren’t many risks and side effects from this procedure as long as you follow your doctor’s post-procedure instructions. Ensure the injection site stays clean and dry, don’t do any strenuous physical activity, and watch for signs of an infection. Rare cortisone injection in ankle side effects include:

  • An infection
  • Skin that looks lighter around the injection spot
  • Weakened tendons or bones
  • Injured nerve or damaged cartilage

It’s also possible that the cortisone crystallizes in the joint, which is why your doctor limits the number of steroid injections you can get in a given time period. You can get them no more than once every six weeks and no more than three injections a year.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Is an Ankle Injection? How Does It Work?

The most common ankle injection is a steroid shot. A steroid injection — or cortisone shot — reduces stiffness, swelling, and pain in your ankle. The steroid acts like the natural hormones that your body produces to prevent inflammation. It’s a safe, non-surgical treatment.

Are Ankle Steroid Injections Safe?

In general, injections have a low risk of side effects. However, with larger doses and repeated use, potential side effects can occur. Repeated steroid injections may worsen arthritis, weaken your tendons and bones, and damage the joint and its cartilage over time. The optimal dose of steroid injections for treating arthritis pain is no more than four injections every twelve months.

Are Ankle Injections Painful?

The pain can be avoided with the help of an expert doctor. Anesthesia relieves the pain while the steroid decreases inflammation. During the procedure, some patients report moderate discomfort and pressure, but it is not too painful.

How Long Does It Take for the Ankle Injection to Work?

Cortisone injection acts as a powerful anti-inflammatory. It can help promptly reduce swelling and inflammation, which in turn can decrease discomfort. The effects of cortisone usually take a few days to have an influence on your condition. The time when the symptoms start getting better vary from person to person. Some patients report immediate relief, while others state that the steroid takes a few days to kick in.

How Long Does an Ankle Injection Last?

The length of cortisone pain relief can vary. Factors including the condition, the affected joint, and the patient’s overall health have an impact on the effectiveness of the injection. Generally, a steroid injection can prevent pain between 6 to 12 weeks. If the injection is used with other rehabilitation treatments like physical therapy, it can provide long-term relief or be curative.

What to Expect After the Ankle Injection?

Steroid injections are among the most common ankle injections. When injected directly into your ankle joint, they help relieve ankle inflammation and pain quickly. You should monitor for any possible side effects.

The possible issues include:

  • Temporary facial flushing or interference with the menstrual cycle.
  • Nonpermanent change in skin color around the injection site.
  • A temporary rise in blood sugars in people with diabetes or a rise in blood pressure.
  • A transient “steroid flare-up” in pain lasts for up to 48 hours after the injection.

After that, your symptoms in the affected joint will reduce, buying you long-standing pain relief. The injected area may stay sore for a few days. Pain relief can help restore the function of your ankle that has been impaired by inflammation. This allows for more effective physical therapy.

What Can I Do After the Ankle Injection?

After the injection, you can return to most activities. A specialist may recommend you avoid strenuous physical exertion for the next 48 hours. Refrain from gym workouts or running for a few days, so the cortisone isn’t displaced from the target tissue. Light activities, like walking, are allowed. Be sure to monitor for side effects, such as an allergic reaction or an infection. These can be accompanied by a rash, new swelling, redness, or fever above 100 degrees.

How Long After an Ankle Injection Can I Exercise?

Let the joint rest for 24 hours after the injection and do not perform any heavy exercise. If you feel pain after 24 hours, wait until the pain from the injection completely disappears before beginning exercise. It’s permitted to take everyday painkillers such as paracetamol and ibuprofen. Try to stay active once you’re able to tolerate exercise without any discomfort or pain. But do not overexert. Excessive physical activity, more than you can tolerate, can damage your knee joint cartilage and cause more destruction.

Can I Shower After an Ankle Injection?

It’s safe to take a shower the same day. But, be sure to avoid prolonged contact with water (soaking in a bathtub, using a hot tub or sauna, swimming), for two days after your procedure. Apply ice to the injection site as needed to relieve pain and don’t use heating pads.

Are Ankle Injections Covered by Insurance?

Cortisone injections are generally covered by insurance plans. If you still experience pain that has not improved with non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, exercise therapy, and lifestyle changes, the probability of having part of the cost covered increases.

How Often Can I Get an Ankle Steroid Injection?

Doctors typically limit the number of cortisone shots into a joint. Generally, you shouldn’t get cortisone injections more often than every six weeks and usually not more than three or four times a year. If there’s a good reason, an ankle steroid injection can be given 3-4 times per 12 month period. By optimizing the first injection to be as effective as possible, we try to avoid repeating the injection. We can repeat the procedure but only if there is a need to, which will be discussed during your follow-up visit.

Do you have any questions about the ankle injection to relieve ankle pain in NYC? Would you like to schedule an appointment with the best-rated pain doctor Febin Melepura MD of a sports pain clinic in NYC? Please contact our office for a consultation with the top pain relief specialist in Midtown Manhattan.

Page Updated on Oct 27, 2022 by Dr. Melepura (Pain Management Doctor) of Sports Injury & Pain Management Clinic of New York Sports Injury & Pain Management Clinic of New York
36 W 44th St #1416
New York, NY 10036
(212) 621-7746
Sports Injury and Pain Management Doctor NYC - Febin Melepura, MD

Febin Melepura, MD is a top rated, best in class interventional pain management doctor. He is a nationally recognized pain relief specialist and is among the top pain care doctors in New York City and the country. He is an award winning expert and contributor to a prominent media outlets.

Dr. Febin Melepura has been recognized for his thoughtful, thorough, modern approach to treating chronic pain and, among other accolades, has been named a “top pain management doctor in New York”, and one of “America’s Top Doctors™” for an advanced sports injury treatments.

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