Pain in the left shoulder: "Frozen shoulder"

Patient

Q: I have suffer from set to now with pain in my left shoulder. which the doctors said it was a frozen shoulder. i was wondering if there can be any underlining problems with this? i can move my left shoulder to a point and the muscles in my arm hurt? please help thank you.

Doctor

A:   Frozen shoulder, also known as adhesive capsulitis, is a condition characterized by stiffness and pain in your shoulder joint. Signs and symptoms typically begin gradually, worsen over time and then resolve, usually within one or two years. Treatment for frozen shoulder involves stretching exercises and, sometimes, the injection of corticosteroids and numbing medications into the joint capsule. In a small percentage of cases, surgery may be needed to loosen the joint capsule so that it can move more freely. Over-the-counter pain relievers, such as aspirin and ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin, others), can help reduce pain and inflammation associated with frozen shoulder. A physical therapist can teach you stretching exercises to help maintain as much mobility in your shoulder as possible. Most frozen shoulders get better on their own within 12 to 18 months. But if the symptoms persist, then, other treatment options may present to you, as for example: steroid local injections, joint distension, shoulder manipulation under general anesthesia.

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