Frozen shoulder, or adhesive capsulitis, is caused by inflammation and pain that limit shoulder movement. It is more common in adults between 40 and 60 years old and is more common in women than men.
In frozen shoulder, the ligaments that hold the shoulder bones together become inflamed, and the shoulder capsule becomes thick and tight. Stiff bands of tissue called adhesions may develop. Individuals with shoulder injury, shoulder surgeries, shoulder immobilization for long periods of time, or other disease conditions such as diabetes, hypothyroidism, hyperthyroidism, Parkinson’s disease and cardiac diseases are at risk for developing frozen shoulder.
This condition can be diagnosed by the presenting symptoms and X-rays or MRI scans. Treatment for frozen shoulder includes nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) and steroid injections for pain, treatment of underlying risk factors, and shoulder arthroscopy surgery. During surgery, the scar tissue will be removed, and any tight ligaments will be dissected. Following surgery, physical therapy will be advised to regain full range of motion and strengthen the muscles.