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Shoulder cortisone injection: a video showing what’s involved

Shoulder cortisone injection: a video showing what’s involved

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By Dr Irwin Lim, Rheumatologist

It's common to hear patients worried about having a cortisone injection to their shoulder. Often this is due to something well-meaning friends have said.

Most shoulder injections done by rheumatologists are done “blind".

When I say “blind", I mean they are done without the aid of any radiologic machine guiding the injection. I often perform cortisone injections this way. I'm not sure that there is clear evidence to suggest that radiology guidance is always better.

In the last few years however, I've started to use the ultrasound machine to help guide my injections for a particular type of shoulder injection.

I find it more satisfying for a subacromial injection. This is a type of injection where we direct the tip of the needle into the subacromial bursa under that ledge of bone at the point of your shoulder, the acromion.

The following video shows a subacromial injection performed in my rooms with Lisa, our ultrasonographer, helping guide the injection.

I recorded this to try and reassure some of you who may be very worried as to what a shoulder injection entails. I hope you'll agree it looks rather simple and comfortable.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-XS6kWijzUE

Dr Irwin Lim is a rheumatologist and a director of BJC Health. You should follow him on twitter here.
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