“Frozen Shoulder” as the name implies, is a disorder characterized by pain and loss of motion or stiffness in the shoulder.
Frozen shoulder, is frequently caused by an injury that leads to lack of use due to pain. Rheumatic disease progression and recent shoulder surgery can also cause frozen shoulder since intermittent periods of use can cause inflammation. Frozen shoulder is often characterized by adhesions (abnormal bands of tissue) growing between the joint surfaces, which restrict motion. There is also a lack of synovial fluid, which normally lubricates the gap between the arm bone and socket and help the shoulder joint to move. It is this restricted space between the capsule and ball of the humerus that distinguishes adhesive capsulitis from a less complicated painful, stiff shoulder. Frozen shoulder is more common in women than in men, and people between the ages of 40 and 70 are most likely to experience it.
People with diabetes, stroke, lung disease, rheumatoid arthritis, and heart disease, or those who have been in an accident, are at a higher risk of frozen shoulder.
Treatment of this disorder focuses on restoring joint movement and reducing shoulder pain. Usually, treatment begins with nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and the application of heat, followed by gentle stretching exercises. In some cases, transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS), with a small battery operated unit , may be used to reduce pain by blocking nerve impulses. These measures are successful in 50% of cases but in the other 50% Frozen shoulder and pain still remain.
Anew treatment method know as “FAST UP” (Fluid distension Assisted Shoulder Therapy Under Pressure Monitoring) also provides effective relief for frozen shoulder in a high percentage of cases.
“FAST UP”, together with a gentle stretching exercise programme, is highly effective for both short and long term results. this method of treatment is safe and when effective means that patients do not have to undergo surgical treatment. After a course of treatment patients do not usually suffer from shlulder stiffness or pain anymore and can immediately resume activities as before.
Frozen shoulder is more problematic for elderly people. With a frozen shoulder, the joint becomes so tight and stiff that it is nearly impossible to carry out simple movements, such as raising the arm or reaching overhead. Stiffness and discomfort may worsen at night.
Prevention is the best approach for adhesive capsulitis : with any shoulder disorder, prolonged immobilization, heavy lifting or sharp pulling of shoulders should be avoided and early return to movement should be encouraged.
In the case of an acute injury, if the pain is intense, you should seek medical care as soon as possible. If the pain is less severe, it may be safe to wait a few days to see if time will alleviate the problem. If symptoms persist, and orthopaedist may provide timely diagnosis and treatment. Orthopaedists are specifically trained in the workings of the musculoskeletal system, including the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of problems involving muscles, bones, joints, ligaments and tendons.