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What is adhesive capsulitis?



Also known as a frozen shoulder, adhesive capsulitis is when the shoulder loses a large range of movement and becomes very painful and stiff. The tissue surrounding the shoulder joint becomes inflamed and painful which prevents movement of the shoulder and, in some cases, prevents movement altogether.


What causes adhesive capsulitis?



Adhesive capsulitis can often occur with no explanation. Causes of adhesive capsulitis can include:
  • Shoulder trauma
  • Shoulder surgery
  • Diabetes
  • High cholesterol
  • Heart disease
  • Dupuytren's contracture
  • Age and gender: 40 - 60 year olds are generally more affected and women are generally
  • more affected then men.

What are the symptoms of adhesive capsulitis?



The main symptoms are:
  • Pain and stiffness in the shoulder
  • Pain at night when lying on the affected side
  • Limited range of movement
Adhesive capsulitis has three stages of symptoms:
  • Freezing – pain and progressively limiting movement
  • Frozen – pain is reduced but movement is very limited
  • Thawing – pain is gone and the shoulder returns to normal movement
This process can take several years to occur.


Physiotherapy for adhesive capsulitis



Physiotherapy can be very beneficial for a frozen shoulder. At Physio.co.uk our specialised physiotherapists have experience of treating adhesive capsulitis. Treatment may include:
  • Stretching exercises
  • Range of movement exercises
  • Strengthening exercises
  • Ultrasound
  • Heat therapy
  • Hydrotherapy
  • Advice on cortisone injections

Can adhesive capsulitis cause any long-term effects?



The process of adhesive capsulitis is usually long term in itself, however, if treated effectively, then the shoulder should be returned to full range of movement with no pain.

To arrange an assessment with Physio.co.uk please contact us or call 0330 088 7800.


Call us on: 0330 088 7800
Phone: 0330 088 7800
Call us on: 0330 088 7800
Mobile: 0330 088 7800
Email us on: office@physio.co.uk
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Physiolates - Pilates in Manchester