Steroid injections can be a useful addition to the management of your musculoskeletal condition. Your suitability for a steroid injection will be discussed with your physiotherapist and you will either receive a copy of the steroid injection leaflet, or have been directed to this page.

Steroid injections are a strong anti-inflammatory which can be used to target areas of pain or inflammation. The aim of all steroid injections is to help reduce the pain to allow for your exercises to be more comfortable and effective or in some cases, treat the problem all together.

Common conditions which we use steroid injections for are:

  • Frozen shoulder
  • Subacromial shoulder pain
  • De Quervain’s tenosynovitis
  • Trigger finger or thumb
  • Knee or shoulder osteoarthritis
  • Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

This is not an exhaustive list and your physiotherapist will discuss with you if a steroid injection would be of benefit as part of your treatment plan.

You will not be able to have an injection if you have any of the following:

  • On blood thinners where you check your blood and have an INR >3.2
  • Open wounds or skin compromises at the site of injection
  • Have had a joint replacement at site of injection
  • Have poorly controlled diabetes
  • Have had a previous allergic reaction to a steroid injection
  • Have an active infection or are feeling unwell

There are also several factors which would need to be discussed with your physiotherapist prior to an injection being administered.


Steroid injections can be really effective and can begin working quickly and can continue to improve for up to six weeks. There are many factors which can impact upon how effective the injection is, which can be as simple as the condition, how your body uptakes the injection, or the type of steroid that is used.
The number of injections you can have will vary depending on the joint and condition we are treating. Your physiotherapist will be able to guide as to the most appropriate treatment.
Yes - There is no reason that you would not be able to drive once having a steroid injection however if you are unsure or this is your first steroid injection, then it would be best to get someone to bring you to the appointment.
Yes - We normally advise 24-48 hours of relative rest after an injection but this would largely depend on the type of work that you do. If you do a very physical job you might want to take a two days off or book the injection around a time which suits you.
Your physio will be able to advise what to do after you have an injection. Essentially, the injection can allow for a pain free window in which the exercises will be more comfortable and can help to treat the underlying cause of your pain.
There are some potential side effects which include infection, anaphylaxis and steroid flare. A more detailed list can be found in the steroid injection leaflet.

If you have any further questions regarding a steroid injection then please talk to your physiotherapist at your next appointment.

Click Here to view our steroid injection leaflet for further information.