Frozen shoulder

Frozen shoulder, also known as adhesive capsulitis, which means sticky shoulder, describes this condition accurately, it occurs in about five per cent of the population. More common in women than men, most women in the beginning of the condition may find it hard to reach the clasp of their brassiere or back pockets; it is worse at night and when lying on the affected side the pain can be excruciating and affect sleep.

Usually it hits people between the ages of 40 and 60 and can be associated with other diseases such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease, metabolic syndrome (obesity, blood sugar issues, and chronic low grade inflammation ). Frozen shoulder can also be associated with hypothyroidism, smoking, and other chronic diseases such as Parkinson’s, stroke, etc.

There are three phases of the symptoms of frozen shoulder:

Phase 1: Freezing, also known as the painful phase; it can last from two to 10 months.

Phase 2: The frozen stage, when the shoulder becomes stiff and movement is limited, which can last from nine to 14 months. The pain is more frequent with overuse.

Phase 3: Thawing, which could take from three months to one year or more.

Some scientists believe that a sedentary lifestyle leading to low activity, injury near the shoulder joint, or a major surgery can trigger this condition.

I have been treating frozen shoulder with a complementary approach for more than 25 years and my experience shows that earlier intervention, combination of conventional and complementary therapies, physio, and exercise can sometimes give great results.

Complementary therapies which can give positive results are:

Medical needle free acupuncture.

Laser acupuncture.

Medical trigger point therapy.


Conventional therapies usually include :



Surgery and home care.

Other conditions which mimic frozen shoulder are:



Wear and tear of shoulder joint.

Inflammation of bicep tendon.

Pain coming from the neck due to disc deterioration in the cervical area.

Autoimmune disease such as lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, and sometimes cancer.

Hence it is very important that if you suspect you have a frozen shoulder that you contact your doctor and rule out any other conditions.

Always consult your GP before starting any new regime or self treatment. The contents of this article are for informational purposes only and are not intended to prevent, diagnose, or cure any medical conditions. The contribution of all authors and researchers is acknowledged.

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