Adhesive capsulitis, also known as frozen shoulder, is a condition that causes stiffness, pain, and limited motion in the shoulder joint. This condition can be caused by injury, surgery, or other underlying medical conditions. Adhesive capsulitis can be a frustrating and painful condition, but there are treatment options available that can help manage symptoms.
Diagnosing adhesive capsulitis can be challenging because it shares symptoms with other shoulder conditions. Your doctor will perform a physical examination and may order imaging tests, such as an MRI, to determine if you have adhesive capsulitis. Once diagnosed, your doctor will recommend a treatment plan based on the severity of your condition.
Treatment for adhesive capsulitis typically involves a combination of physical therapy, medication, and sometimes surgery. Physical therapy is the cornerstone of treatment and focuses on improving range of motion and reducing pain. Your physical therapist may use manual therapy, such as joint mobilization, to help improve shoulder mobility.
Your doctor may prescribe medication to help manage pain and inflammation. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) are often used to reduce inflammation and alleviate pain. Corticosteroid injections may also be used to reduce inflammation in the shoulder joint.
In severe cases, surgery may be necessary to release the tight tissues in the shoulder joint. This procedure is called a capsular release and involves cutting the tight tissues to improve range of motion. Recovery from surgery can take several months, and physical therapy is an essential part of the recovery process.
Adhesive capsulitis can be a challenging condition to prevent, but there are steps you can take to reduce your risk. Maintaining good shoulder mobility through regular exercise and stretching can help prevent shoulder stiffness. If you have an underlying medical condition that increases your risk of adhesive capsulitis, such as diabetes, managing that condition can also help reduce your risk.
Adhesive capsulitis can be a frustrating and painful condition, but there are treatment options available that can help manage symptoms. Physical therapy is an essential part of treatment and focuses on improving range of motion and reducing pain. Medications and surgery may also be used to manage symptoms. Taking steps to prevent the condition can also help reduce your risk. If you are experiencing shoulder pain or stiffness, talk to your doctor about treatment options.