the pros and cons
While the injection can be lifechanging for some, it should only be used when other treatments have been exhausted. Dr Dr Mayoni Gooneratne, Founder of Human Health by The Clinic, where the injection is offered, said: 'There are complications and risks with high dose steroids so this should only be given when they've tried everything else.' This is not an alternative to taking a daily anti-histamine but more for those who are still having an extreme reaction when taking all available medication. It comes with a long list of side affects so the need for the injection must be weighed up against these.
Dr Sohere Roked, a GP at Omniya Clinic in London said: 'The Kenalog injection is not first line treatment for hay fever. It is not generally available on the NHS. It's a high-dose injection of corticosteroids and long-term use can cause brittle bones, skin thinning, bruising, blood pressure issues, increased fat, and weakening of the immune system. 'It does provide relief for some people who have severe hay fever symptoms, but other options should be explored first such as high dose antihistamines, eye drops, and nasal sprays.'
Dr Mayoni added: 'Most of our patients who get this injection are veterans of hay fever. They've got terrible, debilitating symptoms that don't stop completely even if they've been trying other things. 'The injection is effective, but it does need to be used cautiously.' Side effects can include fat atrophy (loss of fatty tissue in a localized area of the body that can cause pitting, scarring and bumps), adrenal suppression (where you body doesn't produce enough hormones), weight change, fluid retention, heart failure and hypertension.