Facts on Frozen Shoulder

Cold hard facts on FROZEN SHOULDER

By Gwen Lawrence

Commonly referred to as “frozen shoulder” is a condition that causes restriction in motion. There is a capsule that surrounds this shallow ball and socket joint, frozen shoulder is the contraction of this capsule which will cause scar tissue to form and inevitable without treatment limit the mobility. Bands of scar tissue form called adhesions contract the capsule all around the joint, which equals stiffness, reduced movement and pain.

Symptoms of frozen shoulder include:

§ Dull deep aching pain

§ Limited movement

§ Difficulty doing motion of brushing hair or putting on a shirt 

§ Pain = difficulty sleeping

…it is important to get a proper diagnosis by a doctor to be sure not to confuse symptoms with that of arthritis and injuries to the rotator cuff.

Causes of this ailment are still not fully clear to the medical community however, may include traumatic injuries to the shoulder, age factors incidence is highest between 40-60, women are at twice as much risk than men, people with diabetes, and the medical community claims some times for “no reason” ……in my opinion there is always a reason….

There is one condition which is unique to the person with diabetes, known as “diabetic chiroarthropathy.” This is due to an accumulation of certain compounds in the tendons and ligaments around joints which restricts movements. The ability to make a fist, place a hand flat on a table, or hold the hands together in praying position are all movements that may be affected. It now seems that the shoulder may also be targeted by this condition. The best approach to treatment is to maintain as near normal blood sugars as possible. The good news is that some of the drugs currently being investigated for the treatment and prevention of complications of diabetes may also help prevent or reverse chiroarthropathy….reference diabeteshealth.com

Stages of Frozen Shoulder: 

1. Pain… 6-12 weeks

2. Frozen…4-6 months pain eases as stiffness increases

3. Thawing…gradual return to normalcy with treatment and attention up to 1 year

Other than moist heat and anti-inflammatory (consult a physician), stretching is the best medicine, to increase motion, and decrease incident of atrophy (muscle loss).

Free You Tube videos for shoulders


• Warm up spine with seated twists, 2 minutes

• Seated arm ups, 2 minutes

• Lying, opposite arm opposite leg, 2 minutes

• Wrist openers in table pose

• Gentle downward facing dogs

• Seated opposite arm opposite elbow behind back, 3-5-minute hold

• Figure 8 shoulder stretch both sides, 3-5-minute hold

• Lying on back anterior deltoid stretch, 3-5-minute hold

• Lying face down should pec stretch, 3-5-minute hold