Whichever approach is used, the actual injection site can be marked with a fingernail imprint or the barrel of a pen. Next, sterile preparation with a povidone iodine preparation (Betadine) and alcohol can be performed. A 22- to 25-gauge needle can be used for the injection. Local anesthesia with lidocaine before the injection can be used, but with a small gauge needle this is not always necessary. Alternatively, an ethyl chloride spray can be used for local anesthesia. Following puncture through the skin and into the joint space, the injection is accomplished. If resistance is encountered, redirection of the needle may be necessary.
Intramuscular Injection: Provides an extended duration of therapeutic effect and fewer side effects of the kind associated with oral corticosteroid therapy, particularly gastro-intestinal reactions such as peptic ulceration. Studies indicate that, following a single intramuscular dose of 80 mg triamcinolone acetonide, adrenal suppression occurs within 24 - 48 hours and then gradually returns to normal, usually in approximately three weeks. This finding correlates closely with the extended duration of therapeutic action of triamcinolone acetonide.
The goal of this study was to prospectively compare the early clinical results of intra-articular injection of hyaluronate or corticosteroid in patients with idiopathic adhesive capsulitis. The authors' hypothesis was that there would be no difference between groups. Sixty-eight patients with idiopathic adhesive capsulitis were equally randomized to receive either corticosteroid or hyaluronate injection. All patients underwent standard physical examination and magnetic resonance imaging. Intra-articular injection was performed through an anterior approach by the same orthopedic surgeon without image guidance. Patients were followed up 2 and 12 weeks after completion of the injection. The primary outcome was the Constant score at week 12. Secondary outcomes included the visual analog scale (VAS) pain score, the American Shoulder and Elbow Surgeons (ASES) score, and range of motion at each time point. No significant differences were noted in preoperative demographic features or baseline shoulder function between groups. After treatment, no significant differences were noted in early clinical outcomes (at weeks 2 and 12) with VAS, ASES, and Constant scores between groups (all P>.05). Evaluation of range of motion showed no difference in forward elevation or external rotation at each time point. Internal rotation was significantly lower at week 2 in the hyaluronate group compared with the corticosteroid group (P=.015). Internal rotation improved at week 12, with no significant difference between groups. Patients treated with intra-articular injection of hyaluronate and corticosteroid for idiopathic adhesive capsulitis showed significant improvement in early clinical scores and range of motion without significant differences between groups.