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Steroid injection therapy with a physiotherapist

Steroid injections deliver anti-inflammatory medication into painful joints or soft tissues to reduce pain and inflammation in the area

Person with hip pain needs steroid injection therapy with a physiotherapist
A steroid injection, also known as a corticosteroid injection, involves the injection of anti-inflammatory medication into painful joints or soft tissues to reduce pain and inflammation in the area. Steroid Injections can only be given by healthcare professionals, which includes some of our specially trained physiotherapists at Circle Health Group.

Steroid injection therapy may be recommended if you are unable to tolerate oral anti-inflammatories, if your condition is too painful for you to manage with physiotherapy exercises, or if your recovery has slowed down and you feel increasing amounts of pain and discomfort. Occasionally, injections may be used to confirm a diagnosis if it is not clear why you are experiencing pain, as the injection can help to locate the cause of your symptoms. The effects of steroid injection therapy can last anywhere from a few weeks to a few months at a time.

Our dedicated team of physiotherapists at Circle Health Group work closely with our consultants, and should you need an onward referral for injections that need to be done using imaging, such as X-Ray, they can quickly arrange this. This might be recommended for injections in areas such as your hip joints, neck or lower back. 

To find out more about steroid injection therapy and whether it might work for you, call us directly to find out more.

How much does steroid injection therapy cost?

  • The initial assessment with an MSK physiotherapist is from £64*
  • An injection and follow-up appointment start from £250**
  • Follow up (treatment) sessions start from £50*

**Follow-up appointments usually take place six weeks after your first appointment.

In many instances, steroid injections can help to relieve swelling, pain and stiffness caused by inflammation. This can help you rehabilitate effectively and help you to return to normal activities sooner by ‘breaking the cycle’ of pain and inflammation. This is usually recommended to those suffering from overuse syndromes and when other types of physiotherapy don’t work.

If it is not clear what is causing your pain, an injection can also be used to help aid the diagnosis. A local anaesthetic injection provides temporary pain relief to help locate where your pain is coming from.

Steroids are a synthetic version of hormones produced by your adrenal glands, which are two small glands found above your kidneys. When injected into a joint or muscle, steroids reduce inflammation in the surrounding area.

There are many reasons why you might need steroid injection therapy, which include:


Osteoarthritis is when the smooth cartilage across the surface of your joint wears down over time. You'll sometimes hear it referred to as wear and tear arthritis, and it's more common the older we get. The wear and tear can make your joints very painful and stiff and can really reduce your mobility.

This is the most common type of arthritis both in the UK and worldwide and it is the most common reason why people have treatment on their joints. Steroid injection therapy is often used to treat osteoarthritis.

Rheumatoid arthritis

Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) currently affects more than 400,000 people in the UK. It is an inflammatory joint condition caused by an autoimmune process, which happens when your body attacks its healthy cells by mistake. This often causes pain, swelling and inflammation in your joints. Joints affected by RA are commonly surrounded by inflamed tissue, which results in chronic pain. This can be eased using steroid injections.


Bursae are fluid-filled sacs in the body that sit between moving tissues. They act as cushions between the bones and tissues, preventing the build-up of friction as they move against one another. If a bursa becomes inflamed it produces more fluid, causing it to swell up into a lump. This inflammation is known as bursitis. Steroid injection therapy can significantly help with stiffness and swelling caused by bursitis.


A fracture occurs when there is a crack in one of the bones in your joint. They are usually caused by a traumatic event such as an injury during contact sports, but they can sometimes happen because of a condition that weakens your bone, for example osteoporosis. If you are struggling with pain and stiffness following a fracture, steroid injection therapy may help reduce your symptoms and speed up your recovery, preventing you from needing surgery to repair long-term damage to your joint.

Carpal tunnel syndrome

Carpal tunnel syndrome is a common condition that occurs when your median nerve becomes compressed, causing pain, numbness and weakness in your hand. Your median nerve starts at your arm and goes down to your hand via your carpal tunnel (a narrow passageway surrounded by bones and ligaments on the lower palm side of your hand), controlling movement and feeling in your thumb and three middle fingers. In some cases, steroid injection therapy can help manage some of the pain and numbness causes by this condition.

Tennis elbow

Tennis elbow (also called extensor tendinopathy) is a condition that causes pain and weakness in the tendons in the elbow that attach the muscles of the forearm with the outer elbow bone (lateral epicondyle). It is often associated with increased periods of unaccustomed strenuous activity with the forearm muscles. Steroid injections may reduce inflammation caused by tennis elbow.

There are very few reasons people wouldn’t be able to have injection therapy, your physiotherapist will discuss this with you as part of your assessment. Your physiotherapist would usually need to know if you have had any previous injections, if you had any adverse reactions or allergies to medications, if you are pregnant, or if you have an infection.

When you choose to go private for physiotherapy with Circle Health Group, you can expect:

  • Flexible appointment times and locations to fit your routine
  • Freedom to choose your hospital and physiotherapist
  • Specialist physiotherapy equipment and imaging facilities at your fingertips
  • Specialist advice and exercises to follow in sessions and at home
  • Tailored services (your physiotherapist will build your programme around your needs)

If you want to know more about steroid injection therapy and find out if it's the right treatment for you, call a member of our team directly.

Content reviewed by Circle in-house team in November 2023. Next review due November 2026.

  1. Steroid injections, NHS
  2. Steroid injection therapy: common questions, NHS
  3. CT guided injections, University College London
  4. Steroid injections, NHS Trust

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