What is it?

Frozen shoulder, also known as adhesive capsulitis, is a condition characterized by stiffness and pain in your shoulder joint. Signs and symptoms typically begin gradually, worsen over time and then resolve, usually within one to three years.

What are the symptoms?

Frozen shoulder

  • Typically develops slowly, and in three stages. Each stage can last a number of months.

Freezing stage

Any movement of your shoulder causes pain, and your shoulder range of motion starts to become limited.

Frozen stage

  • Pain may begin to diminish during this stage. However, your shoulder becomes stiffer, and using it becomes more difficult.

Thawing stage

  • The range of motion in your shoulder begins to improve.

For some people, the pain worsens at night, sometimes disrupting sleep.

What to expect?

In addition to treatment by your doctor or physiotherapist you can try the following things:

  • Painkillers such as Tylenol might help in relieving pain.
  • Try to continue to use the involved shoulder and arm as much as possible given your pain and range-of-motion limits.
  • Applying heat or cold to your shoulder may help relieve pain.
  • Avoid overuse of the shoulder such as lifting heaving loads.

Think you might have Adhesive capsulitis of the shoulder?

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Think you might have Adhesive capsulitis of the shoulder?