Redwood Orthopaedic Surgery Associates | Santa Rosa, CA

Freeze! What to Know About Frozen Shoulder

Shoulder Treatments Santa RosaAlthough summer is the time of year to indulge in frozen treats like ice cream and popsicles, the last frozen thing you want to experience is frozen shoulder or adhesive capsulitis. As a condition that restricts your range of motion around your shoulder, frozen shoulder can be painful and feel a bit debilitating. From the symptoms to the treatment of this condition, this article will discuss a few of the basics of frozen shoulder. Read on to learn more.

What Are the Symptoms?

If your shoulder is a bit stiff because you played your first game of softball in over ten years, that doesn’t mean you have frozen shoulder. Symptoms of frozen shoulder are characterized into three categories including the freezing stage, frozen stage, and thawing stage.

  • Freezing stage. The initial stage of frozen shoulder is the most painful. During this stage, any shoulder movement causes pain, and your range of motion is often limited.
  • Frozen stage. The best part about this stage is that your pain may start to subside. However, your shoulder may become increasingly stiffer.
  • Thawing stage. This stage is when you start to see some improvement in your mobility and comfort level.

What Are Treatment Options?

To help you find mobility and get rid of pain, we usually create a treatment plan for our patients that includes physical therapy and corticosteroid injections. During physical therapy, you will be pushed to help strengthen your shoulder and gain back your range of motion. If physical therapy alone isn’t beneficial, corticosteroid injections can be used to help get rid of inflammation and ease the pain. If both of these treatments are ineffective, we may perform a shoulder manipulation technique which is typically done under anesthesia.

If you are experiencing some stiffness in your shoulder and have restricted movement, you may have frozen shoulder. Frozen shoulder is a condition whose cause is unknown. By causing extreme inflammation in the shoulder, it can restrict movement and cause extreme pain. If you have started to experience these symptoms, contact Redwood Orthopaedic Associates today!

Posted in: Shoulder Treatments

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