After this period of worse symptoms, frozen shoulder usually gets better, though full recovery may take up to 3 years. Primary treatment recommendation for frozen shoulder is physical therapy, with a focus on shoulder flexibility.
Frozen shoulder most commonly occurs in people between the ages of 40 and 60, and is more common in women than in men. Diabetic patients are at an increased risk for developing frozen shoulder.
The head of the humerus fits into the shoulder blade. This joint is covered with a strong connective tissue, called the shoulder capsule.
Synovial fluid lubricates the shoulder capsule and the joint, to felicitate easy and frictionless movement.
What Happens in Frozen Shoulder?
The shoulder capsule thickens and becomes stiff and tight in frozen shoulder. Adhesions which are thick bands of tissue develop around the joint. There may be less synovial fluid in the joint, in few cases. This all results in loss of normal capacity to stretch, resulting in loss of range of movements of shoulder joint.
The Main Symptoms of This Condition Are
Severe pain, and
Being unable to move the shoulder – by self or with the help of others.
This is the first stage of frozen shoulder, where you slowly have more and more pain. As the pain worsens, the shoulder loses range of motion. Freezing stage typically lasts between 6 weeks to 9 months.
Stage 2: Frozen
In Frozen stage, the Pain may actually improve, but the stiffness remains. This stage lasts in between the 4 to 6 months and daily activities are very difficult.
Stage 3: Thawing
Shoulder motion gradually improves during this stage. But complete return to normal or close to normal strength and motion may take from 6 months to 2 years.
The cause of frozen shoulder is not yet fully understood. A few risk factors may put you for developing frozen shoulder.
Diabetes – For an unknown reason, frozen shoulder occurs much more often in diabetics. Diabetic patients with frozen shoulder have a greater degree of stiffness and a longer duration for stage two i.e. frozen stage.
Other diseases – Hypothyroidism, hyperthyroidism, Parkinson’s disease, and cardiac disease are often found associated with Frozen shoulder.
Immobilization – Frozen shoulder may develop after a shoulder has been immobilized for a period of time due to some reason such as surgery, a fracture, or other injuries. Patients are advised to move their shoulders soon after injury or surgery to prevent frozen shoulder.
Dull or aching pain.
Pain is typically worse when you move your arm.
The pain is located over the outer shoulder area and may sometimes radiate to the upper arm.
Frozen shoulder usually gets better over time, sometimes recovering in 6 to 9 months and sometimes it may take up to 3 years. In early stages, the treatment is primarily based upon to control pain and restore motion and strength through physiotherapy.
Physical therapy helps restore motion. These should be done under the supervision of a physical therapist. Therapy includes stretching and range of motion exercises for shoulder flexibility. Sometimes heating is done to help loosen the shoulder before stretching.
Physiotherapy is also necessary to maintain the motion that is achieved with surgery advised for the frozen shoulder when medicinal treatment does not give relief. This usually is advised in 2nd stage, i.e. Frozen stage.
It is a slow process, and your persistence to therapy is the most important factor in getting relief from Frozen shoulder.
In some cases even after several years, the motion does not return completely leaving some degree of stiffness. Diabetic patients may continue to have some degree of shoulder stiffness.
Though uncommon, frozen shoulder may recur, especially if an additional factor like diabetes is present.
Homeopathy offers help in treating frozen shoulder which otherwise may cause prolonged incapacity. The sooner the homeopathic treatment is taken, the more effective it is, but it is not too late to start it even if the disease has progressed further
Homeopathic medicines for frozen shoulder help relieve the presenting symptoms, i.e. pain and stiffness. Homeopathic treatment also gives relief for the underlying cause, i.e. triggering factor of frozen shoulder, the famous AETIOLOGY of homeopathy.