The Washington Post reports that a new study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine suggests that fluid injections known as viscosupplementation may not be helpful in treating knee osteoarthritis.
The study found that “during a follow-up period of about four months, people who had viscosupplementation reported slightly less pain than the others, though the decrease was described as ‘clinically irrelevant.’ No improvement was found in use of the knee.”
Reuters notes that the researchers also observed that the injections also may carry side effects such as swelling and inflammation of the joint shortly after treatment.
Medscape adds that “the reviewers also found that viscosupplementation was associated with an increase in risk for flare-ups that was not statistically significant, as well as with a significantly increased risk for serious adverse events. The most common adverse events were related to the gastrointestinal system, cardiovascular system, cancer, and musculoskeletal system.”
The researchers wrote that “because of increased risks for serious adverse events and local adverse events, the administration of these preparations should be discouraged.”