What is frozen shoulder? Frozen shoulder, otherwise known as adhesive capsulitis, is a condition marked by pain and stiffness in the shoulder joint. Over time, patients may find it difficult to move the shoulder as the condition progresses. At this time, physicians are not 100 percent positive of frozen shoulder causes, but patients who have immobilized the shoulder for an extended period of time and patients who have diabetes are linked to this condition. Located in the Dallas, Arlington and Fort Worth, Texas area, the pain physicians at OPTIMAL Pain & Regenerative Medicine® are highly trained and experienced at diagnosing and treating frozen shoulder.

What is Frozen Shoulder?

The shoulder is a ball and socket joint composed of three bones, the upper arm bone, the shoulder blade and the collarbone. The ball of the upper arm fits into the socket of the shoulder blade and is surrounded by strong connective tissue called the shoulder capsule. When the shoulder capsule becomes inflamed, it swells, stiffens and forms scar tissue, leading to limited mobility and the feeling of a stiff or “frozen” shoulder.

Many patients with shoulder pain ask the question, what is frozen shoulder? Frozen shoulder should not be confused with shoulder osteoarthritis. Frozen shoulder refers specifically to an affected shoulder joint that formed scar tissue and lost range of motion from the shoulder capsule becoming irritated and inflamed.

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What are Frozen Shoulder Causes?

Frozen shoulder causes are not fully understood by pain physicians. There is not a clear connection to arm dominance, occupation or overuse of the shoulder joint. Physicians have linked a few factors to patients who have experienced frozen shoulder, including immobilization of the shoulder joint after an injury, fracture or surgery, diabetes, Parkinson’s disease and cardiac disease.

How is Frozen Shoulder Treated?

In order to treat frozen shoulder, a pain physician must properly diagnose the condition. A physician will review a patient’s medical history and perform a physical examination to see if shoulder movement is limited and if pain occurs during movement. X-rays and an MRI may also be performed to rule out other orthopedic injuries and to confirm the frozen shoulder diagnosis.

It is estimated that 90 percent of patients will experience alleviated pain and improved range of motion with simple treatment measures. Frozen shoulder is typically treated with heat and/or ice, the use of anti-inflammatory medications, physical therapy, corticosteroid injections and transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS).

If you would like more resources on frozen shoulder causes or would like to know, what is frozen shoulder?, contact OPTIMAL Pain & Regenerative Medicine®, proudly assisting patients in the Dallas, Arlington and Fort Worth, Texas area with a variety of frozen shoulder treatments.

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