Frequently Asked Questions on Frozen Shoulder

What is frozen shoulder?

Frozen Shoulder also known as shoulder contracture or adhesive capsulitis shoulder is a medical condition in which patients experience pain and stiffness of the shoulder which may worsen with time. In the most severe cases, a sufferer is unable to move their shoulder at all.

What are the causes of a frozen shoulder?

Frozen shoulder commonly a result of the thickening and inflammation of the flexible tissue that encapsulates the joint of the shoulder. Also causes include previous shoulder surgery or shoulder injury, health conditions such as a stroke or heart disease, diabetes or a condition called Dupuytrens contracture, where small lumps created by thickened tissue appear in the fingers and hands.

How much time does it take to recover after a frozen shoulder surgery?

Recovery period after a frozen shoulder surgery vary from 6 weeks to three months.

What are the stages of adhesive capsulitis?

The course of a frozen shoulder have three stages: 

  • Stage one: The ""freezing"" or painful stage, this stage may last from six weeks to nine months, and in this the patient has a slow onset of pain. As the pain worsens, the shoulder motion is restricted. 
  • Stage two: The ""frozen"" or adhesive stage by this stage there is slow improvement in pain but the stiffness remains. This stage lasts from four to nine months. 
  • Stage three: The ""thawing"" or recovery, in this stage shoulder motion slowly returns toward normal. This generally lasts from 5 to 26 months.
What treatment can be given to a patient with frozen shoulder?

A shoulder support is a common treatment given to patients with frozen shoulder. Painkillers provide temporarily pain relief, whereas a support will ensure that the pressure and wear and tear on the area is minimized. Physiotherapy and gentle exercise may also be recommended in an effort to strengthen the shoulder and thus alleviate the pain.