How is Frozen Shoulder Diagnosed?
After reviewing a patient’s medical history, the orthopedic shoulder specialists at The Shoulder Clinic of Idaho, will complete a physical exam testing range of motion, areas of pain and where limited mobility occurs in the shoulder. The diagnosis of frozen shoulder or adhesive capsulitis can usually be confirmed based on history and examination. If another condition is suspected such as shoulder arthritis or a rotator cuff tear, additional testing, such as an MRI scan, or an x-ray, of the shoulder may be performed
What are Frozen Shoulder Treatment Options?
Frozen shoulder generally gets better with time. Though the duration toward resolution may take two years. A daily stretching program, with stretches done multiple times a day, can be beneficial in restoring range of motion and alleviating pain. Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications may be recommended along with a corticosteroid injection which may alleviate acute symptoms.
Weight bearing or strengthening exercises should be avoided while the shoulder is frozen, as it can make the problem worse. Strengthening an already stiff and painful shoulder can delay recovery.
Does Adhesive Capsulitis Require Surgery?
For those patients who struggle to regain shoulder motion and pain relief despite compliance with a daily stretching program, surgical intervention can be considered. The shoulder specialists at The Shoulder Clinic of Idaho have experience with arthroscopic surgery that may provide benefit to those patients with a frozen shoulder. An arthroscopic procedure called a “Lysis of Adhesions” or “capsular release” can be performed combined with a manual manipulation of the shoulder. An arthroscopic shoulder release procedure, done before a shoulder manipulation, can reduce the risk of injury to the tendons and bones. This procedure is followed immediately by a return to physical therapy.
Patients in the Boise, Meridian, Nampa, and the surrounding communities of the Treasure Valley have found that arthroscopic shoulder treatment affords them a more controlled and precise release of the shoulder capsule. Shoulder specialists and orthopedic surgeons prefer this technique as it allows the added benefit of inspecting the glenohumeral joint in a minimally invasive fashion.
The Shoulder Clinic of Idaho serves patients in Boise, Meridian, Nampa, and the surrounding communities of the Treasure Valley. If you have symptoms of a frozen shoulder, or an unknown cause of shoulder pain, please contact the our offices for a consultation.
- Joseph Lynch, MD, has written an article about frozen shoulder, please click here* to read more.