Tissue covers and connects the bones, ligaments, and tendons of your shoulder joint.
When this tissue thickens or scar tissue forms, it squeezes the joint and makes it harder to move your shoulder.
Doctors have yet to pinpoint the exact causes of frozen shoulder. They do know the process involves thickening and contracture of the capsule surrounding the shoulder joint.
Some health problems or injuries can increase your risk of frozen shoulder.
Treatment that requires you to restrain arm motion can increase your frozen shoulder risk.
These might include treatments for:
Also at a higher risk for frozen shoulder are people who have chronic health issues such as:
Most cases of frozen shoulder clear up over time.
But, some people may have complications from frozen shoulder. Motion may not return fully and they might still have a small amount of stiffness, even after years.
At UPMC Sports Medicine, we offer frozen shoulder treatments to relieve your symptoms and get you back in action.
Contact UPMC Sports Medicine at 1-855-93-SPORT (77678) to make an appointment for frozen shoulder.
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Frozen shoulder causes stiffness and restricts your shoulder's normal motion.
People with frozen shoulder often feel a dull or aching pain — most often over the outer shoulder area and sometimes the upper arm — that gets worse when you try to move.
Frozen shoulder symptoms tend to occur in three stages, which can happen slowly over a few months:
If your doctor suspects that frozen shoulder is the cause of your stiffness, he or she will order imaging tests — such as an x-ray or MRI.
These tests will help confirm a frozen shoulder diagnosis and make sure you don't have arthritis or a broken bone.
To make an appointment for frozen shoulder symptoms, contact UPMC Sports Medicine at 1-855-93-SPORT (77678).
For most people, a frozen shoulder will loosen up on its own but this can take months to even a year.
Because it may take a long time for your frozen shoulder symptoms to resolve, treatment may be very helpful to speed the process along.
At UPMC Sports Medicine, our goals of frozen shoulder treatment are to control pain and restore motion in your shoulder.
You may be able to control frozen shoulder pain with anti-inflammatory drugs, such as:
Physical therapy can help loosen the shoulder joint and restore motion.
More than 90 percent of patients improve with these two simple nonsurgical treatments.
If your shoulder pain and motion don't improve after the prescribed course of anti-inflammatory drugs and physical therapy, your doctor may suggest frozen shoulder surgery.
Surgery aims to stretch or release the contracted joint capsule of the shoulder.
The most common surgical frozen shoulder treatments include manipulation under anesthesia and shoulder arthroscopy.
To make an appointment for frozen shoulder treatment, contact UPMC Sports Medicine at 1-855-93-SPORT (77678).
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