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Do Gel Injections for Knee Pain Really Work?

Posted Mar 06 2011 9:17pm

Gel injections administered for the temporary relief of osteoarthritis knee pain have become more popular over the past few years because the number of people suffering from osteoarthritis knee pain has dramatically increased.  Usually patients are advised by their orthopedic surgeon to try a series of gel injections to see if it would help ease some of their knee pain.

How do gel injections work?

Gel injections aka rooster comb injections, or hyaluronic injections do not replace cartilage in the knee joint.  Instead, these injections are thought to work by lubricating the knee joint -they do not add padding to the joint.  Unfortunately, there have been no long term studies completed with any of these injections and the studies that have been completed have been short term and done on a small sample of people.  In addition, two of the three studies that have been completed stated that the injections worked no better than a placebo. 

Even though there are other safer, more effective non-surgical options available; surgeons will usually only offer gel injections such as Synvisc, Orthovisc, Euflexxa, Supartz and Hyalgen along with medications and anti-inflammatories to patients with knee pain.  In hopes that if those don't work then the patient would return to their office for a knee replacement- eventually.

The bottom line...

The bottom line is the jury is still out on whether gel injections for the knee joint actually work.  However, if you are suffering from osteoarthritis knee pain and you want to avoid a total knee replacement then you should consider trying all conservative care options prior to knee surgery.  Keep in mind, that if the gel injections do provide you with some relief the results are definitely temporary in nature.  Instead, consider trying cold laser therapy a completely non-invasive approach to treating your knee pain. To read more about cold laser therapy and how it can help treat your knee pain visit

To find out the differences between knee injections and cold laser therapy click here

Dr. Alexandra Schnee, D.C.- A Dallas Chiropractor and Dallas Cold Laser Therapy Professional- Specializing in the non-invasive treatment for knee pain using cold laser therapy. To reach Dr. Schnee call the DFW Spine & Joint Center at 214-596-1051.


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