- Education – understanding the stages of frozen shoulder is very important. Frozen shoulder can be very frustrating for patients. First of all, it generally starts for no apparent reason. The first stage is often very painful and it disrupts sleep and this seems out of proportion for a condition that had no injury. Secondly, it takes a long time to recover from frozen shoulder. So, understanding that this is the condition’s natural course helps to decrease fear and frustration.
- Exercises – exercises are used to improve the range of movement in the shoulder and to improve the strength of the shoulder muscles
- Manual therapy – hands on techniques are used to improve the mobility of the shoulder joint and the soft tissues around the shoulder
- Modalities – modalities such as ultrasound, electrical stimulation, cold packs and hot packs may be used in conjunction with the other treatments above to decrease pain and improve range of movement
Other treatments outside the scope of this blog include corticosteroid injections, oral medication, and manipulation under anesthesia.
Frozen Shoulder Part 5 will discuss the treatment of frozen shoulder based on the different stages of the condition.
Kelley MJ et al Shoulder pain and mobility deficits: Adhesive capsulitis. J Orthop Sports Phys Ther 2013; 43(5):A1-A31.