Let’s think about Shoulder Pain

Have you ever feel sudden pain in your shoulder by doing the work. Sports person, they all love to play sports like cricket, basketball, tennis, badminton, volleyball, etc. on a huge green carpet on a green lawn. And you feel that your shoulder is stuck at some point while playing the game or changing the clothes or driving the car or doing daily activities and you realize that your shoulder is stopped moving and it becomes nonfunctional and creates an emergency situation. Then don’t be so panic and there is nothing to worry about, this condition is known as “Frozen shoulder”.

It is a condition that occurs in the shoulder joint. The shoulder joint is a ‘Ball and Socket’ type of joint.

What is Frozen Shoulder?

Frozen shoulder is a condition in which there are limits to the range of motion. When the tissues around the shoulder become tighter and thicker. Scar tissue develops gradually. There is inflammation of the shoulder capsule, i.e. Adhesive capsulitis. By the inflammation of the shoulder capsule, there is a reduction of space which leads to the ball-socket does not have enough space to rotate properly that’s why there are limits to the range of motion.


There are basically so many factors that can be the cause of shoulder Pain-

  1. The extremely weakened immune system
  2. Hormonal imbalance in the body
  3. Inflammation and heavy diabetes
  4. A longer period of inactivity due to an illness and injury
  5. Stiffness of tissues
  6. Scar tissue formation


The main symptoms of the Frozen shoulder are pain and stiffness that make it difficult or impossible to move it.

  • Dull achy pain  
  • Pain in the shoulder muscle which wraps around the top of the arm and upper arm
  • Pain gets worse at night, which makes it hard to sleep.

In the frozen shoulder condition, you will go through a three-phase-

1. Freezing Stage

  • When you move your joint then you develop mild/moderate pain or sometimes severe pain in your shoulder.  
  • It slowly worse over time and may hurt more at night.  
  • This can last anywhere from 6 to 9 months.  
  • You are limited in how far you can move your shoulder. 

2. Frozen Stage

  • Your pain might get better but your stiffness gets worse.  
  • Moving your shoulder becomes more difficult and it becomes harder to get through daily activities.
  • This stage can last for 4-12 months.

3. Thawing Stage

  • Your range of motion starts to go back to normal
  • This can take anywhere from 6 months to 2 years


To diagnose your frozen shoulder, the doctor will do a physical examination of your shoulder that how badly it hurts and how far it moves.

  1. X-ray
  2. MRI
  3. Ultrasound – This imaging is done to rule out arthritis or tearing of the rotator cuff that causes pain and limits how far it moves.

Risk factors

  1. Age and Sex: People 40 or older, particularly women are more prone to have frozen shoulder
  2. Immobility or Reduced Mobility
    • Rotator cuff injury
    • Broken arm
    • Stroke
    • Recovery from Surgery
  3. Systemic Disease
    • Diabetes
    • Overactive thyroid
    • Under active thyroid
    • Cardiovascular disease
    • Tuberculosis
    • Parkinsonism Disease


Let’s think about Shoulder Pain Treatment


  • There are certain medications that you used in Frozen shoulder for temporary relief
  • NSAIDs- Aspirin and Ibuprofen
  • Corticosteroid injections
  • Surgery- This is very rarely necessary to treat frozen shoulder

Physical Therapy

  1. Joint distention- The therapist will inject sterile water into your shoulder capsule to stretch it
  2. Shoulder manipulation-  It can help to loosen up the shoulder tissue, but is very rarely done anymore because Arthroscopic surgery has replaced it.
  3. Proprioceptive neuromuscular facilitation- It will help to perform daily activities.
  4. Finger ladder:
  1. Shoulder wheel:
  2. Stretching of shoulder muscle:
  3. Stretching of shoulder muscle:

Nikita Sharma

Hope you have enjoyed reading this blog and gained good knowledge regarding the topic. Here, I am Nikita Sharma I am a student of physiotherapy and I love to write blogs related with Physiotherapy.

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