Joint Aspiration

Joint Aspiration

We do joint aspiration at our clinic.

What is a joint aspiration? Joint aspiration is a minor procedure that removes fluid from the space around a joint using a needle and syringe. This procedure is often done to relieve swelling or to obtain fluid for further testing to use in making a diagnosis. Joint aspiration is commonly done in the knees. Fluid can also be removed from other joints such as the hip, shoulder, ankle, elbow, or wrist though not all providers in our office perform these procedures.

When do I need a joint aspiration? If you have accumulation of fluid and or swelling around the joints you may treat this with oral medicine, compression, ice, elevation or you may need a joint aspiration. By analyzing the fluid around joints diagnosis’s like gout, arthritis and joint infections can be made. If you suffer from bursitis (inflammation of the bursa) this causes fluid to build up in a joint. Removing this fluid can decrease pressure and relieve pain, bringing mobility back to the joint. There may be other reasons why a healthcare provider would recommend a joint aspiration.

Are there risks involved in this procedure: With any surgical procedure there will be risks and complications can occur. Possible risks of this procedure include: Discomfort at the aspiration site, bruising, swelling, or infection at the site of aspiration.

What to expect when you come to our clinic:  Not all of our providers perform joint aspirations so you may want to call in advance if you feel that you will require this procedure. We will explain the procedure in detail and allow you to ask any questions you may have. You will be asked to sign a consent form giving the provider permission to do the procedure. No prior preparation is needed before this procedure. You will be positioned appropriately allowing the provider to have access to the site. The skin will be cleaned with antiseptic solution. The area will be anesthetized so we can continue the joint aspiration without causing you pain. A needle will be inserted through the skin into the joint, this may feel like pressure or discomfort. The fluid will be removed by drawing it up into the syringe. The needle is finally removed and a dressing is applied.

What to expect after the procedure: After your procedure, you must keep the site clean, and dry. Leave the bandage in place if we instructed you to. You may feel mild pain, but tell us if you begin to have a fever, redness, swelling, bleeding, or draining from the aspiration site. If you start to experience increased pain, you will also need to contact us.

This procedure is done quickly, and is usually free of complication. If you experience anything out of the ordinary or any of the above listed symptoms, make sure you seek medical care right away.