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Viscosupplementation for the Management of Arthritis

Arthritis is a common condition that affects millions of people worldwide. One of the most prevalent forms is osteoarthritis (OA). This type of arthritis occurs when the cartilage that cushions the joints breaks down over time, leading to pain, stiffness, and reduced mobility.

Viscosupplementation is a treatment method that involves injecting a gel-like substance called hyaluronic acid (HA) into the joint to reduce pain and improve function. The idea behind this treatment is that it provides lubrication and cushioning to the joint, reducing the friction between the bones and thereby reducing joint pain and inflammation.

Joint injection using viscosupplementation
Arthritic Joint Pain

The effectiveness of viscosupplementation for joint arthritis has been a topic of much debate over the years, with conflicting evidence and opinions on its efficacy. In this blog, we will examine the current state of research on the effectiveness of treating osteoarthritic joint pain using viscosupplementation.

What are Examples of Viscosupplementation for the Management of Arthritis?

As mentioned earlier, viscosupplementation for the management of arthritis involves the injection of hyaluronic acid into a joint. Examples of viscusupplemention productions include Monovisc, Synvisc and Durolane. The hyaluronic acid included in this products is a naturally occurring substance found in the body's joints and is responsible for maintaining the health and integrity of the joint tissue.

When injected into the joint, the hyaluronic acid forms a gel-like substance that coats the joint surface and provides cushioning, reducing pain and inflammation. The treatment is typically administered regularly with the frequency of the injection being based on the brand.

The Effectiveness of Viscosupplementation.

Some studies have suggested that viscosupplementaton is an effective treatment option, while others have found it to be no more effective than a placebo.

A 2015 review of 89 research trials found that viscosupplementation is associated with a significant reduction in pain and improvement in function compared to a placebo injection. However, the amount of improvement was found to be small, and the results were only significant in certain patient subgroups.

Another meta-analysis published in 2019 found that viscosupplementation was associated with a significant reduction in pain and improvement in function compared to a placebo injection. However, there was a limited number of people included in the study.

Overall, the evidence suggests that viscosupplementation provides some benefit for certain patients with osteoarthritis arthritis. However, it is important to note that the effectiveness of this treatment can vary widely depending on the individual patient and the severity of their condition.

Potential Risks and Side Effects.

Like any medical treatment, viscosupplementation carries some potential risks and side effects. These can include:

  1. Injection site reactions, such as pain, swelling, and redness

  2. Allergic reactions to the hyaluronic acid

  3. Infection at the injection site

  4. Bleeding in the joint

  5. Worsening of symptoms

It is important to discuss these risks and potential side effects with your provider before undergoing viscosupplementation treatment.


In conclusion, the effectiveness of viscosupplementation for joint arthritis is still a topic of much debate and controversy. While some studies have suggested that it provides some benefit, the results are only significant in certain patient subgroups.

If you are considering viscosupplementation for joint arthritis, it is important to discuss the potential risks and benefits with your health care provider and determine whether it is the right treatment option for you. You may also want to discuss adding cell based injection therapy to viscosupplementation for an improved outcome.

To book your consultation today, contact ReGenesis at 780.800.9931

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