Frozen Shoulder

“Painful and extremely limiting condition affecting the shoulder joint”

What is it?

“Frozen shoulder” is a term used for adhesive capsulitis, the term frozen shoulder is regularly and incorrectly used to describe general shoulder pain and stiffness. Patients often self-diagnose a “frozen shoulder” when they feel pain and stiffness, this is not helpful and should be avoided. correct clinical diagnosis is imperative especially when dealing with adhesive capsulitis.

A true adhesive capsulitis progresses through 3 stages:

  1. Freezing: 6 weeks to 9 months, this is the acute inflammation stage and is characterised by pain and increasing stiffness
  2. Frozen: 4 to 9 months, gradual reduction in pain but severe limitation in motion
  3. Thawing: 5-26 months, gradual reduction in stiffness

Diagnosing a frozen shoulder is difficult as the cause is still unknown, however we are aware that the condition affects up to 1 in 20 people in the UK and it normally occurs in people aged 40-60. Some risk factors include: a previous shoulder injury, diabetes, heart disease/stroke and a condition called Dupuytrens contracture.

Shoulder Pain Treatment

What does it feel like?

The signs and symptoms will depend on the stage of the disease, however there are some common themes including a severe restriction in range of motion, tasks like brushing hair and taking off shirts become very difficult.

How can we help?

Once adhesive capsulitis has been diagnosed your chiropractor will discuss treatment options with you. These treatment options often include:

  • Mobilisation
  • Home exercises and stretching
  • Acupuncture
  • Therapeutic ultrasound
  • Cryotherapy/ heat therapy

Treatments must match the stage of the adhesive capsulitis, your chiropractor will work to help manage pain in the freezing phase, then to help retain motion in the frozen stage.

We Can Help You

Get in touch to find out how we can help you with injuries and pains.

028 9185 9990

or email