Sodium hyaluronate (Hyalgan)

What is Hyalgan?

Sodium hyaluronate is a sterile mixture that is made up mostly of a natural, highly purified sodium hyaluronate that comes from rooster combs.

FDA approved:

August 1997

Brand Names and International Availability:

Amo Vitrax (Australia, Thailand); Biolon (Mexico, Korea, Israel); Duovisc (US); Healon (US); Healon Gv (US); Healon Yellow (Hong-Kong); Healonid (Austria, England, France); Hyalgan (France)(US); IAL (Indonesia, Malaysia, Hong-Kong, Thailand); Provisc (US); Viscoat (US); Vitrax (US)�

How does it work?

The exact mechanism is unknown, however it is speculated that the quality and quantity of hyaluronate in the joint fluid and tissues may be deficient in those with OA. Adding
sodium hyaluronate allows the joint to function better.


Sodium hyaluronate is supplied in 2 ml vials or 2 ml pre-filled syringes. It is administered by intra-articular injection once a week (1 week apart), for a total of five injections.�

How should I take it?

Your doctor will inject your knee once a week for five weeks.�


Those allergic to products from birds such as feathers, eggs, and poultry should avoid this product.

The safety and effectiveness of sodium hyaluronate has not been studied in children.�

Sodium hyaluronate should be avoided by those with known hypersensitivity to hyaluronate preparations.

Intra-articular injections are contraindicated in cases of infections or skin diseases in the area of the injection site.

The safety and effectiveness of the use of sodium hyaluronate in joints other than the knee have not been established.

The safety and effectiveness of sodium hyaluronate have not been established in pregnant or nursing women.

Drugs Interactions:

Should not be used with disinfectants containing quatemary ammonium salts for skin preparation because hyaluronic acid can precipitate in their presence.

Possible side effects:

These side effects are not considered serious but are certainly annoying for those experiencing them. The most frequently reported side effects include gastrointestinal complaints, headache, injection site pain, knee swelling/effusion, and rash, bruising, and itching at the injection site.

Signs of infection at the injection site include fever, redness, swelling and pain. If you suspect an infection notify your doctor right away.

Signs of a possible allergic reaction are rash, swelling and difficulty breathing. These symptoms should be reported immediately.�

For more information:
Midwest Arthritis -Hyaluronic acid

Mosby’s GenRx�, 10th ed. Copyright � 2000 Mosby, Inc.