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Readers Respond: Did You Know About Possible Side-Effects of Cortisone?

Responses: 344


Updated January 13, 2010

was not told of side effects, but works!

i had a cortisone injection yesterday in my left hip. i'm 54 & have advanced degeneration and could barely walk or tie my own shoes. i was told by my ortho that a hip replacement is inevitable but to try the injections first. the actual pain of the injection itself wasnt bad (but tightening of the muscle and pressure type pain). i walked out of there afterwards just fine. by the time i got home and anesthetic wore off the pain not only returned but returned with a vengence. i was on the couch by 5pm and limping again. i had trouble falling asleep as well. my face got very red and i felt feverish for a while too. BUT...once i fell asleep, and woke today with no pain (first time in over a year) i was out gardening by noon. the pain isn't completely gone yet but it's 95% better already! my face is still extremely flushed, especially on the side of the injection, and my blood pressure rose to 149/96 but my hip is feeling MUCH better. so far i'm thrilled. side effects are very tolerable!
—Guest Barb

NO never again

I went in for what I was told was a heel spur. I was rushed into getting the shot without having a chance to ask questions, being informed of any side effects, or talk about options. Dr. running behind schedule and even though I was new I was not given time to talk to him. Had the injection in my right heel for plantars faciatis/achilles tendinitis. Shot was painful through out, left a burn pattern in my foot in areas that were not painful before, and has not relieved the pain yet, two days later. I will not get another one ever again. There has to be other options.
—Guest Guest Cheryl


Happily my doctor didn't confuse me with the side effects. I took the shot and was relieved of severe pain in right knee within a day. I sleep less now but that is it. Surgery and follow up medications too are not without side effects so why not try this. I am glad I did.
—Guest Vinod

Worth the gamble for me

I tried everything else for hip bursitis, and when all else failed, I got an injection yesterday. I'm experiencing all the bad reactions, but if it relieves the chronic pain, it will be well worth it. As much as we want medicine to be foolproof, it isn't. And there are lots of good doctors out there who are still good doctors, even if everything they try doesn't work.
—Guest Murry

didn't know of the side effects

I never expected the side effects I'm having but my knee doesn't hurt so i'm going to be happy with it. I keep telling myself that my knee doesn't hurt and that helps me deal with these unexpected side effects.
—Guest parker

Still waiting to see if it was worth it

I had a steroid shot yesterday in my left elbow. I was not told of any side effects, yet within 30 minutes I wasn't feeling as usual. I have not seen these listed, but pay attention to your body. I had a funny taste in my mouth, I felt jittery on the inside, and it felt as if the back of my throat was closing up. Although those symptoms finally went away, my arm is feeling worse than before the shot. I'm hoping that by this weekend I will be pain free and have more mobility in my arm. Good sight.
—Guest jean washam

knee pain relief

wasn't aware of side effects, even as being a nurse myself..it was explained to me the pain relief would not come until 2-3 days later...ice to knee has helped. The injection itself was almost painless and would have it repeated in a second if the pain does subside...this would be a better alternate to the intense pain i've experienced now for almost 3 years!
—Guest Beth

Now I understand what is happening!

Thank goodness for the 4 a.m. Internet! Received a cortisone shot in knee, was not informed of any side effects. I wondered what was happening with a severe headache, heart palpitations, inability to sleep. The messages posted here let me know that I am not alone with these side effects. Time will tell if the cortisone was worth it, but relief from disability and pain is way worth the nuisance unexpected side effects. Thanks, everybody, for your comments!
—Guest Judy in MN

Cortisone Injection

I just had my injection and was told of all side effects. I did unfortunately experience cortisone flare, increased blood sugars (type-2 diabetic), and have red flushing to my cheeks. I was told that I would start feeling relief in about 7 days. In one day, I have already felt a decrease. I am looking forward to the pain decreasing over time and hopefully it will push my total knee replacement off for a few more years as I am only 35. A little information, don't just rely on the doctor to inform you of your options, do some research yourself. Proactive patients are happiest when they are involved in their treatment plan. If you are unsure of wanting any procedure, tell the doctor you need more time. They can only pressure you if you allow them that control.
—Guest Dina C.

Injection in Knee

I had a shot in my knee yesterday. I asked about side effects with the doctors nurse and I was told that there weren't any. My knee is uncomfortable today but I expected that since I had something like cortisone before but it wasn't the same... you know what they say prepare yourself for the worst. However today my face has been flushing and getting really really hot and I am very irritable. Called the doctors office back today and was told that maybe I have a fever because the nurse wasn't aware of any side effects. It took me looking it up on here to actually get answers! Love my doctor but he really needs a different nurse.
—Guest Terra

Anger & irritability

I was given injections in both shoulders in one doctors visit. It was very painful. I had to try to ice two shoulders at once. Very tricky. The same day I started over reacting to everyone & was so irritable everything was overwhelming. I started crying & I couldn't function very well emotionally. I was snapping at everyone so I went online & found out you can have what is called emotional side effects from steroid injections. I was not given any side effect info from my doctor. In fact once I left his office & I didn't need surgery I was basically abandoned for any follow up help. I will never get an injection or take any steroid medication ever again because this has been a nightmare. The medical field is not paying attention to this side of cortisone which I feel is something you would discuss before ever giving someone an injection.
—Guest Barbara

Doctors are addicted to Cortisone

I have had seven shots. Five in my shoulder, one in my lumbar, and one in my right hip. Each one is less effective, more painful. Began having spinal migraines after the one in my lumbar. There are specialists who do nothing BUT give cortisone. If you tell your doctor you don't want cortisone, they act like you insulted their children. There MUST be something else...
—Guest JT Hope


I had a shot in my knee yesterday. There were about 2 brief painful moments I could have done without, but compared to having it my heel years ago? This was a breeze! I was aware of possible side effects, but forgot about the 'cortisone flare'. Wish I'd remembered 2 hours ago when I was trying to sleep! Hoping it's as effective as my Doctor anticipates!

never again in an ankle joint

I was not told about the side effects but I was in too much pain to care. I will not do this again as each time its getting worse and worse. I'm only 22 and have to say, never again in this ankle.
—Guest robert

Absolutely yes!

I had five shots over a period of weeks for plantar fascitis and pain went totally away (still continue stretching exercises). It's been five months. I had an injection in my right knee for cartilage tear and so far so good. Shot was not painful, but was afterward. I went home, rested my knee and put ice pack on it on and off for about an hour. Pain went away during middle of night. I go back in two weeks to see doctor again and it looks like it's working. I plan to have an injection in left knee as well. Doctor did not explain side effects, but I did my research way in advance anyway.
—Guest Jen

Would You Have Had a Shot

Did You Know About Possible Side-Effects of Cortisone?

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  3. Orthopedics
  4. Arthritis
  5. Arthritis Treatment
  6. Injections
  7. Side-Effects of Cortisone Shots - Your Experience With a Cortisone Shot

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