“Chicken shots” is another name for viscosupplimentation or hyaluronic acid injections for knee osteoarthritis. Osteoarthritis can cause pain and swelling of the knee. The cartilage surfaces of the bones in your knee start to wear down over time from years of use, injuries and the genetics from your parents. The cartilage surfaces rely on the joint fluid to “bathe” them and help provide nourishment and cushioning from wear and tear. Hyaluronic acid is what gives your joint fluid viscosity or thickness to keep your cartilage surfaces happy. There are multiple products on the market some are naturally derived from rooster combs and some are synthetic. Injections are once a week and depending on the product can be 1, 3, or 5 weeks in a row. Most people notice some improvement after week 3 and the maximum benefit is 1 month after the last injection. The effects can last from a few months to 3 years. The goal is to decrease pain and swelling so you can maintain or improve your activity level as well as put off the need for a total joint replacement.
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