MMA fighters with knee injuries (ligament, tendon) should stop getting Cortisone shots! (Research)

Discussion in 'Strength & Conditioning Discussion' started by MMAart, Sep 30, 2017.

  1. MMAart

    MMAart Brown Belt

    Jul 8, 2015
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    A few weeks ago, my doctor gave me Cortisone injections on my skin to treat keloid scars.

    After a little more than a week, I started to notice my ankles and knees felt wobbly when I walk, something that I have never experienced before. I also noticed that the strength of my lower back felt weaker, and I was having mild lower back pains when I sit while using the computer.

    I don't drink, smoke, nor do any recreational drugs, and I have not been doing any weight lifting or physical activities beyond normal light walking, so I know for sure it has to be related to the cortisone shots, but I didn't know exactly what.

    Being an undergraduate student going into the medical field, I decided to look up some research, and what I found was a bit alarming, so I thought I post this here on Sherdog, knowing that fighters do read this forum, so hopefully, this information can help them prevent unnecessary injuries.


    "Complications of cortisone shots can include:
    • Thinning of skin and soft tissue around the injection site
    • Tendon weakening or rupture"
    -- Mayo Clinic

    In a research article published by the American Journal of Sports Medicine, it is found that cortisone (aka corticosteroid, an anti-inflammatory steroid not to be confused with anabolic steroids) weakens normal tendons by causing the collagen protein in them to die ("necrosis"):

    "Hence, Kennedy and Willis concluded that physiologic dosed [cortico] steroid injection weakens normal tendons for up to 14 days through collagen necrosis. They also recommend limited physical activity for the 2 weeks following injection and against repeated injection." [24]



    Do NOT get cortisone injections and exercise! Better yet, consider other alternative treatments than cortisone injections! It is not worth the risk!
  2. Bekim

    Bekim Green Belt

    Nov 10, 2010
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    It's pretty common knowledge, regarding the side effects.
    mike sherry, Sano and Badger67 like this.
  3. Badger67

    Badger67 Taxidea taxus

    Feb 16, 2014
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    ^ this. My first year learning rehab in college we were taught to use caution with exercises on those who had cortizone shots. Its high risk short term high reward for athletes. Unless you can afford a lot of time off i wouldnt get it if i could avoid it.
    mike sherry, Sano and Bekim like this.
  4. pliftkl

    pliftkl Green Belt

    Sep 19, 2007
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    Austin, TX
    Cortisone injections made the difference between me be in excruciating pain and being able to function properly when I herniated a disc in my neck.

    I'd use them again on a joint that was causing that level of pain, but I'd also take the "be careful with it" religiously.

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