Intraarticular corticosteroids for chronic arthritis in children: efficacy and effects on cartilage and growth

J Pediatr. 1995 Aug;127(2):317-21. doi: 10.1016/s0022-3476(95)70320-9.


Objectives: To assess the efficacy and effects on cartilage and statural growth of intraarticular corticosteroid (IAS) therapy for chronic arthritis in children and adolescents.

Methods: We examined 21 children and adolescents with chronic arthritis (median duration, 8 months) that did not respond to nonsteroidal antiinflammatory drugs. The 21 joints injected with triamcinolone-hexacetonide were examined before and 7 weeks after IAS therapy by gadolinium-enhanced magnetic resonance imaging; 14 joints were also examined 13 months after IAS therapy.

Results: All joints treated with IAS had improvement. Magnetic resonance imaging showed long-lasting suppression of inflammation and pannus without evidence of toxic effects on cartilage. Statural growth was not affected.

Conclusion: In experienced hands, IAS therapy may be a safe and effective tool in the treatment of chronic arthritis in childhood. Long-term follow-up is mandatory.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Ankle Joint / drug effects
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents / administration & dosage*
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents / adverse effects
  • Arthritis, Juvenile / drug therapy*
  • Arthritis, Juvenile / pathology
  • Cartilage, Articular / drug effects*
  • Cartilage, Articular / pathology
  • Child
  • Contrast Media
  • Elbow Joint / drug effects
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Gadolinium DTPA
  • Growth / drug effects*
  • Humans
  • Injections, Intra-Articular
  • Knee Joint / drug effects
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Male
  • Organometallic Compounds
  • Pentetic Acid / analogs & derivatives
  • Time Factors
  • Triamcinolone Acetonide / administration & dosage
  • Triamcinolone Acetonide / adverse effects
  • Triamcinolone Acetonide / analogs & derivatives*


  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents
  • Contrast Media
  • Organometallic Compounds
  • Pentetic Acid
  • Triamcinolone Acetonide
  • triamcinolone hexacetonide
  • Gadolinium DTPA