What is Hyaluronate?

Hyaluronate is a natural occurring chemical that helps joints work properly by acting like a lubricant and shock absorber.  It is similar to the lubricant that is typically found in the joint.  The amount of this chemical is often depleted in people with arthritis.  This medicine is injected directly into the knee, hip or shoulder to relieve osteoarthritis pain.

Who may benefit from Hyaluronate injection?

People with mild to moderate osteoarthritis of the knee, hip or shoulder may obtain significant relief with injection of hyaluronate, particularly if they have not had relief with anti-inflammatory medications or tylenol.

Are there different forms of Hyaluronate?

Yes, the medication comes in different doses and strengths.  Synvisc, Hyalgan, Suparz, Gel-One, and Euflexxa are just a few of the many forms of this medication.

What do I need to do to prepare for injection?

Not a thing, the injection is a simple procedure.  Patients may drive afterwards and do not need to significantly change their diet or activity.

What are my restrictions after the injection?

For the first 48 hours you should avoid strenuous activities or prolonged activities that put a stress on your joints.  After that, you may resume all normal activities.

How is the injection performed?

First you will rest on an examination table.  The treatment area will be numbed with a local anesthetic to assure there is no discomfort.  Then your doctor will use advanced ultrasound image guidance to place the medication in the desired area. Then skin will be cleansed and a Band-Aid will be placed on the injection site.  That’s it.  Although most skilled physicians can successfully inject a joint without the benefit of ultrasound guidance, numerous studies suggest that the procedure is more accurate, less painful and more effective when using ultrasound guidance.

Are there any risks with the injection?

People who are allergic to eggs, chicken or chicken products may wish to use non-avian sources of Hyaluronate.  As with any injection, there is a risk of infection, bleeding, allergic reaction or failure to alleviate pain although these complications are exceedingly rare.

How long will my relief last?

On average our patients receive up to 6 to 12 months relief from a single injection.  Each person is unique and the duration of relief is dependent upon the severity of the arthritis, patient’s age, weight and general activity level.

 If you have any concerns or questions following your procedure, please do not hesitate to contact your physician.

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More Information on Hyaluronate

Hyaluronate is found in the extracellular matrix. It is the largest polysaccharide found in vertebrates and is a major component of our synovial fluids. It helps increases the viscosity of this fluid by forming hydrated matrices.  Hyaluronate is used as a viscosupplement, administered by injection into joints, to treat osteoarthritis. It is FDA approved specifically for the knee. Hyaluronate provides relief by recovering the viscoelasticity of the articular fluid, and by stimulating new production from synovial fluid. It is thought to be anti-inflammatory as well.

Sodium hyaluronate is used as a surgical aid in variety of procedures performed on the eyeball including cataract extraction. It is used in plastic surgery to reduce wrinkles on the face. It can be used as a hydrogel for regenerative scaffolding.

Hyaluronate is available in pill form, but there is little evidence that this route of administration works.  There is not much reason to think it should either.

The information on this site is solely for purposes of general patient education, and may not be relied upon as a substitute for professional medical care. Physician consultation is required for evaluation and treatment of your specific condition.