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  • Brindley Brooks

Steroid/Kenalog Injections

You may hear these injections referred to as kenalog, triamcinolone, kenacort or steroid injections, but it all refers to the same thing. These injections have been used as a treatment for HS abscesses for quite some time with success. This is a great option for an isolated abscess(es) that is flared or problematic. These injections are intended mainly for Hurley Stage 1 and 2 and isolated abscesses. This can also

be used to promote healing for wounds that do not close properly and/or that are not closing at all. This type of treatment is not intended for large areas of the body, Hurley Stage 3, or severe HS (unless it’s an isolated problematic abscess).

What to Expect with an Injection

This is a minimally invasive procedure where your doctor injects medicine directly into the affected area. It is used to ease inflammation, pain, and swelling and can also promote draining. Usually the injections are given two to three weeks apart, or even once a month for up to three months. There are times where one injection is enough and repeat injections are not necessary. This is meant to be a short-term and intermittent treatment.

Injections are not typically beneficial for improving acute inflamed lesions, however, steroid injections do offer a more "attractive" and safer alternative to incision and drainage or lancing of an abscess.

Injections should be avoided if there is clinical evidence of infection.

Below is an actual injection as filmed by an HS patient.

Science Behind Steroids

Glucocorticoids are naturally occurring hormones that have been used since the 1950s as anti-inflammatory therapy for immune mediated diseases. Glucocorticoid receptors are present in the cytoplasm of almost all human cells. Upon binding to the glucocorticoid domain the receptor translocates to the nucleus and binds to glucocorticoid response elements in DNA, resulting in transcription of steroid responsive genes. Glucocorticoids have very wide-ranging clinical effects due to their potential to increase transcription of a variety of cytokines, chemokines, and inflammatory adhesion molecules.

Content in this article is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking treatment because of something you have read on this website.

Written by Denise Fixsen

Edited by Brindley Kons


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