OPDDr.L H Hiranandani Hospital, Powai
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Frozen shoulder, also known as adhesive capsulitis, is a common condition in which the articular shoulder capsule (a sac of ligaments surrounding the joint) swells and stiffens, restricting its mobility. It typically affects only one shoulder, but one in five cases affect both.
The term “frozen shoulder” is often used incorrectly and misdiagnosed when arthritis , rotator cuff tears are mistaken for this condition.
The shoulder has a spheroidal joint (ball – and – socket joint), in which the round part of one bone fits into the concavity of another. The proximal humerus (round head of the upper arm bone) fits into socket of the scapula (shoulder blade). Frozen shoulder is thought to cause the formation of scar tissue in the shoulder, which makes the shoulder joint’s capsule (not to be confused with the rotator cuff) thicken and tighten, leaving less room for movement. Therefore, movement may be stiff and even painful.
Frozen shoulder is a condition that commonly occurs in people between 40 and 60 years of age. Women tend to suffer with frozen shoulder more than men.
The most pervasive sign or symptom of frozen shoulder is a persistently painful and stiff shoulder joint. Signs and symptoms of frozen shoulder develop gradually; usually in three stages in which signs and symptoms worsen gradually and resolve within a two – year period.
However despite these measures the shoulder may continue to be stiff and painful. The main problem associated with adhesive capsulitis or frozen shoulder is the morbidity, that is the time it takes to resolve ; in such cases where you desire early gain of movement and lesser morbidity an arthroscopic procedure called capsular release is advisable.
Post Arthroscopic Release
A small endoscope (tube) is inserted through a small incision into the shoulder joint to remove any scar tissue or adhesions. The shoulder movement is aggressively initiated after the surgery and patients generally have excellent symptom resolution.
Your doctor will suggest a suitable option depending on the severity of your signs and symptoms. If you experience stiffness in the shoulder joint it is recommended that you seek medical attention sooner rather than later in order to prevent permanent stiffness.