How often can you take a cortisone shot?

If you’re one of those people who live with chronic pain, then you’d understand the struggle to find ways and means to manage it. One of the commonly prescribed medications for managing inflammation is cortisone shots. In this article, we will delve deep into how often can you take a cortisone shot.


Cortisone shots are injections that contain corticosteroids used to relieve pain and inflammation in different parts of the body. These injections are administered directly into your joints, muscles or soft tissues. If taken in moderation, they can provide relief from debilitating symptoms such as severe arthritis.

What is Cortisol: An Overview

Cortisol is sometimes referred to as ‘the stress hormone.’ It’s responsible for regulating blood sugar levels, immune response, metabolism and even memory formation. When there’s too much cortisol circulating around our systems (chronic stress), it can lead to unwanted side effects like weight gain or depression.

Hint: High cortisol levels over long periods may also increase the risk of developing osteoporosis.

The Science Behind Cortisone Shots

A significant amount of research has gone into understanding how these shots work on inflammation within the body. Essentially when introduced into an inflamed area – like arthritic joints—corticosteroids act by suppressing cytokines which are pro-inflammatory cells that stimulate joint degeneration causing pain.

This suppression reduces swelling allowing range of movement inside affected areas reducing stiffness affording temporary comfort at least enough time for other life changes possible treatments yet studies have yet yielded conclusive data on efficacy beyond short term usage

Bonus: While studies imply significant benefits accrued during repeated [1][2]use; many physicians warn about excessive consumption bruising internal harm including suppressed immunity

Difference Between Cortisol vs Corticosteroids

When most people hear “corti” something associated with the hormone cortisol comes to their mind. Although both are similar, they aren’t exactly analogous – corticosteroids are more versatile in managing inflammation and treating other medical conditions like asthma.

Cortisol is secreted by your adrenal glands throughout the day at varying levels depending on factors such as stress, illness or time of day but it’s not quite sufficient for curbing chronic inflammation

Fun Fact: Cortisone was first isolated around 1950 by several Nobel Prize Winners who also discovered adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH), which stimulates steroid-synthesis from adrenal cortex cells

How Often Can You Take a Cortisone Shot?

The frequency with which you can take a cortisone shot depends on various considerations including severity of symptoms, resistance to treatment, medical history etc. The number and length between doses require physician evaluation.

Duration Between Shots

In general experts recommend waiting at least 3 months before receiving another injection; however if there is need for immediate relief injections spaced out over several days could be given under close supervision

Please Note: A maximum of eight shots per year is recommended

Factors Affecting Frequency of Injections

There’re limits set based off:

Severity & type

Different types demand different frequency lengths preventing excessive consumption risky adverse reactions

Medical History

Immunocompromised individuals must follow doctors orders to reduce chances opportunistic bacteria entering their system suppressing immune response

Doses Size & Amounts Administered

Each case varies whether low or high dosages administered depth location times injected change space in between

Side Effects Of Overusing Steroid Shots

Steroid injections function optimally when used sparingly. That being said there have been reports outlining side effects that emanate from prolonged use like:

  • Headaches
  • Muscle weakness
  • Hypertension
  • Elevated blood sugar

Long-term usage may lead to detrimental effects, including weight gain because of increased appetite or even worse conditions like cataracts[3].


In summary, patients with chronic pain conditions should seek a qualified medical professional to evaluate dosages and frequency cortisone prescriptions. Treatment must be closely monitored by educated stakeholders informing evidence gathering therapies appropriate to patient need their full understanding

Both physicians and patients alike must communicate openly low dosage risks long term aversive effects where excessive requests may potentially cause harm which can in turn compromise outcomes

Remembering the recommended eight per year as mentioned earlier – advocating for proper and safe consumption-for pain management benefits outweighed by potential risk consequences.

Cortisone injections are not panacea however as one part complementary treatment they have displayed significant utility demonstrated improved quality of life short-term relief against debilitating symptoms.

Don’t hesitate to reach out if you suffer from arthritis-related symptoms- the ball’s now in your court!

Random Posts