Shoulder injection

September 25, 2012 at 9:00 pm | Posted in rheumatoid arthritis (RA) | 4 Comments

Well I’ve had the injection in my shoulder – the one I wasn’t looking forward to in this post. In fact it all went very smoothly. I phoned the GP and she was quite amenable to doing the injection and gave me an appointment for the next day.

While I was there I took the opportunity to ask her if she thought it was RA related, just out of curiosity, and because Andrew (see comments in this post) had got me wondering. In fact, it’s almost certainly not, because I have an excellent range of movement in the joint itself. I can’t lift the arm up past horizontal, but the ball will slide around in the socket any which way you like, provided it’s not my muscles/tendons having to do the work, so the joint isn’t affected.

I was a little concerned, but being a brave penguin didn’t show it, when doc picked up this huge sausage-shaped cannister and said, ‘Right, if you can just get your arm out … ‘ Yikes, I thought, surely she’s not going to inject ALL THAT! ‘Just going to put a bit of cold spray on first,’ she said, cheerfully, and I realised that was what the cannister was. Phew! The syringe was actually quite small, as was the needle, when compared to the ones that go in the knee!

In fact the injection hardly hurt at all. I can’t say the same for the shoulder a few hours later, when the fast acting anaesthetic had worn off and the steroids hadn’t kicked in yet! I had a thoroughly miserable evening and worse night, but the next morning I could brush my hair without going ‘OUCH!’ and the following night I could get my bra off. Can’t actually mange to get the damn thing ON in the mornings yet – partly because mornings are bad anyway due to general RA stiffness, and partly because on takes longer than off, giving my shoulder a chance to remember that it hurts … but I think we’re getting there.

Flippers crossed that this injection will do the trick and allow the tendon time to heal. In the meantime I’m continuing with the physio exercises to try to strengthen the muscles so it doesn’t happen again.

If the injection fails to work, we’ll be looking at surgery, and I do NOT want to go down that route if I can possibly avoid it!



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  2. I’m so glad the injection went so well and with so little pain, Penguin! I read Andrew’s comment; my rheumatologist has also pointed out that RA can and does affect the soft tissues, too. Wouldn’t you know. At any rate, it’s good that in your case, it’s not–but I sure hope the steroid works well so that shoulder surgery isn’t necessary. Keeping my fingers crossed for you… 😉

  3. Here’s to hoping that the injection staves off problems for a while. I’m anticipating the same treatment in the future so keep us posted on how it goes.

  4. Polly: I’m glad the injection went more smoothly than you anticipated. Hopefully it will give you the relief you need and you can avoid anything nastier … (like surgery!). All the best.

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