How long do steroid injections last?

Had a steroid injection after about 48 hours it really kicked in. For the first time in 18 months my knees and elbows stopped hurting and my fingers were less sore. I felt really well and the nausea I get a lot also went. Family were saying I was back to normal personality wise.

It lasted five days. On Saturday I woke up unable to move again. Out of the blue all the pain is back in my knees and elbows and fingers and is worse than ever.

Can it really be over that quick? :(

27 Replies

  • The depot injections like Depomedrone should last about 6 weeks or so.

  • Yes it is short lived for me usually between 7-14 days at the very most. If you have a joint injected when they are swollen etc then those intra-joint ones last months usually. I had my knee done in mid August and it's still doing very well. They last about six months for me. Sorry you have gone back to hurting.

  • I got about three weeks last time - felt like a miracle!

  • Mine lasted about 4/5 weeks and I too thought it was a miracle cure. Had another couple which also worked very well. Just when I thought my problems where over, was told I couldn’t have anymore as I have osteoporosis and carnt have anymore steroid jabs as it tends to make the bones thinner. Back to the drawing board 😲😲😲

  • When I was first diagnosed with sero-positive RA they gave me two depo injections and neither worked. My diagnosis has now been changed to psoriatic arthritis probably and it lasted 5 days. The consultant said if I showed an improvement I should go back on dmards.

  • I might be a bit odd but for me the depo only lasts, literally hour's. I can feel it working but is gone, just like that. For me it simply doesn't last the day, sorry.

  • Makes me feel a bit better with my five days!

  • I’m 7-10 days. I’m sorry you’ve had little relief x

  • Lasts a couple weeks for me, and doesn't get rid of all the pain. Never lasts as longs as it says on the tin for me. Useful for a breathing space though.

  • When given into the hip they never work for me but given into the joints i get a few weeks from them.

  • I’ve found they last 6-8 weeks for me then I slowly start to feel tired and sore.

  • Oh dear, I feel horribly guilty as I've had some that have lasted 6 weeks.... I guess it can also depend on how extreme your inflammation is and what dose they give you of steroids?

  • I feel even guiltier/luckier...a 120mg Depomedrone injected in my thigh used to calm all my painful joints & last 10/12 weeks -however another type of steroid injected into my shoulder had no effect at all...except the discomfort of the actual injection.

    I'm sure a lot does depend on who does the injection.

  • I agree. My bilateral hip bursitis seems to have been cured with steroid injections given over 18 months by my rheumatologist himself. He takes time to place the injections and they were quite large doses. They were for the hips but helped everywhere else. Previously there were times when i couldn’t walk at all because of the pain.

  • Mine woukd depend on who did the injection. My GP did the first set and itnlasted maybe 30 hours, first rheumy lasted approx a week. New rheumy and way more experienced at injections of steroids lasted 3 weeks. Tells me that it is the location within the joint where the steroid is injected makes all the difference.

    Mine took effect almost immediately

    I would suggest shopping around for a very experienced almost retired rheumatologist to do your injection. They will get the correct spot and get you more relief.


  • Yes, sounds about par fot the course. Be careful. Steroids work, but you will gain weight, BP will increase, and you will be at risk for illness.

  • Those side effects depend on the individual.....if you mean Prednisolone tablets I do understand that is the case...I only took that for a week & had to stop due to side effects.

    But I had Depomedrone injections in my thigh to control all my joints on & off for 16 years & I didn't gain any weight, my BP didn't alter, & my general health stayed the same.

    It's like Dmards, some people get great results & live comfortably for years, whilst others have no success with them at all.

  • Good point. My side effects are from prednisone tablets. Injections did nothing for me.

  • I was exactly the reverse....Depo was the magic bullet...Pred sent me loopy!

  • Mine lasted about 3/4 weeks but took a few days to kick in, got it to try and make me feel better before I went on holiday, they don't have the same result as Prednisolone tabs, but I didn't want to go back on them, been on them too long.

  • I was told steroid will last 3 months it for me about 6 weeks

  • When do the Prednisolone tablets start working ? I have just taken my second dose I feel so ill this is my first really bad flare for a while I am just sitting here I can’t do any thing.

  • Mine lasted 3 months. Just wearing off now. Sorry you did not have a similar experience.

  • Same here

  • I had a steroid injection in my left ankle over 12 months ago, it was administered by my Rumy consultant under the guidance of a radiologist who was able to pinpoint the exact area, I am still free from pain in that area, I am going for another injection shortly for Policeman’s heel also to be guided by radiology, maybe the radiology is something new I am not sure but it is better than having injections on a guess basis by the GP.

  • Love this idea.

  • Mine was just the big standard one in the bottom. Don’t seem to last

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