About Frozen Shoulder - Adhesive Capsulitis
The shoulder joint has extensive movement capacity. To allow this amount of movement, many tendons, ligaments and bands of tissue are involved within the shoulder joint and capsule. When these bands of tissue become stiff or tight, the shoulder can no longer move as intended, causing pain and limiting mobility. This condition is called “frozen shoulder”, a frustrating shoulder issue that can require extensive treatment for recovery. Trauma and/or inactivity are the most common causes of frozen shoulder. One concern for surgical rotator cuff repairs is a resulting frozen shoulder from immobility due to pain or patient apprehension. Atraumatic adhesive capsulitis often occurs in women more so than men and has a strong correlation with thyroid disease and diabetes mellitus. The most common cause of atraumatic adhesive capsulitis, however, is “idiopathic” meaning unknown.
Symptoms of Frozen Shoulder:
The cause of frozen shoulder is not always known. Those who are middle-aged or older are more prone to frozen shoulder and certain health conditions can put you at higher risk. Diabetes, Parkinson’s disease, cardiovascular problems and hyperthyroidism can all impact the risk for frozen shoulder. Frozen shoulder can also be caused when the shoulder joint is immobilized after an arm or hand injury, causing the shoulder tissues to tighten, stiffen and become less mobile. Frozen shoulder can limit how you can use your arm and is usually limited to only one side. It can be painful to lift or rotate the arm, limiting mobility, and lifting the arm or hand above shoulder level can be difficult or very painful.
Treatment for Frozen Shoulder:
Frozen shoulder usually occurs over time, and it also requires time to recover. At Ospina Medical, we offer treatment options for frozen shoulder that help expedite recovery, improve mobility, and minimize pain. Treatment plans are designed to break apart any adhesions within the shoulder joint while strengthening the shoulder tendons, ligaments and muscles that support the shoulder.
Treatment options include cortisone injections into the glenohumeral joint that can help with pain and act as an anti-inflammatory. Drainage of the joint is also possible if there is excess fluid build up or an effusion that is limiting your range of motion. Additionally, there is another procedure called capsular distention that is specifically designed to break apart adhesions and improve range of motion. With this procedure, a large volume of fluid (a solution of local anesthetic and sterile saline) is injected into the shoulder joint to distend the capsule and break-up adhesions. By using a local anesthetic in the joint, our physicians are also able to dramatically increase range of motion of the joint with minimal pain to allow for improved participation in physical therapy and range of motion exercises.
Lastly, our providers are also able to provide advanced Regenexx procedures within the shoulder joint and surrounding structures. Utilizing platelet-rich plasma (PRP), platelet-lysate, and bone marrow concentrate containing stem cells, our providers are able to not just improve range of motion, but heal damaged tissues and structures that may have led to the development of your frozen shoulder.
If you are interested to learn more about Regenexx and whether you qualify for treatment, please reach out to Ospina Medical, located in Midtown Manhattan in New York City to speak with one of our Regenexx providers today.
Frozen Shoulder FAQ
Who is most at risk for a frozen shoulder?
The people most at risk of developing adhesive capsulitis include those who:
- Are over age 40
- Have had a shoulder injury
- Have been immobilized for an extended period
- Have diabetes mellitus
- Have thyroid disease or issues
- Have had a stroke
- Have Parkinson disease
- Have taken certain antiretroviral medications
How long does it take for adhesive capsulitis to get better?
It depends on a number of factors, including the reason for the frozen shoulder and overall health. On average, it can take between 10 months to three years or longer in some cases to recover from a frozen shoulder with rehabilitation and treatment.
What actually makes your shoulder “freeze”?
The ligaments that hold the shoulder in place in the shoulder socket become stiff and inflexible, causing pain and making it difficult or almost impossible to lift or rotate the arm.
How Does Frozen Shoulder Feel?
A frozen shoulder (adhesive capsulitis) can cause problems like stiffness and immobility. See how Regenexx® in New York City can provide relief.Read
Will PRP Alleviate My Shoulder Pain?
Looking for a more natural, convenient solution for shoulder pain or a rotator cuff injury? PRP therapy may be right for you.Read