What is a frozen shoulder? If it’s a ‘true’ frozen shoulder it is also known as adhesive capsulitis – this is where the joint capsule that covers the ball and socket joint becomes inflamed and then stiff; its a bit like a piece of cling film that gets folds in it and you can’t uncrease the folds!
Pain and discomfort is often felt ‘inside’ the shoulder and pain will often radiate into the upper arm. It’s diagnosis can easily get confused with other shoulder problems, such as rotator cuff injury and sub-acromial related pain (‘shoulder impingement’), and there can be some cross-over in diagnosis which makes things confusing! To further complicate things, the shoulder can be influenced by other joints, muscles, tendons, ligaments and nerves in elbow, wrist, neck, ribs, mid and low back. Of course your previous medical history, lifestyle/ergonomic factors, and other stressors are crucial in understanding what is going on
However, DO NOT WORRY Whether the problem is complex or fairly straight-forward, the key to managing a frozen shoulder is to get help as soon as possible It doesn’t matter if you go and see a good physio, chiropractor or osteopath, you should get help from someone who has understands the condition and knows how to get you better, out of pain and restoring function back into the shoulder and beyond.
We do find that the correct kind of manual therapy, appropriate rehab exercises, advice and education will often greatly improve a frozen shoulder If we feel it requires further investigation then we will have no hesitation to refer to your GP or private consultant for imaging or possibly a cortisone injection.
Perform these exercises in small doses regularly
Keep things largely pain-free – ‘knock on the door’ of where the pain is but don’t break the door down!