Treatment is aimed at easing pain and helping the shoulder move again. Options are:
Initial care may be:
- Medicine to ease pain and swelling
- Medicine injected in the shoulder to help it heal and ease pain and swelling
- Exercises to make the shoulder stronger and help it to move better
People who do not benefit from initial care may need surgery. During surgery, the shoulder may be forced to moved to increase motion. A small incision may also be made to release the tight tissues.
This content is reviewed regularly and is updated when new and relevant evidence is made available. This information is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with questions regarding a medical condition.
Edits to original content made by Denver Health.
Copyright © EBSCO Information Services
All rights reserved.
a (Adhesive Capsulitis)
American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine http://www.sportsmed.org
Ortho Info—American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons http://orthoinfo.aaos.org
Canadian Orthopaedic Association http://www.coa-aco.org
When it Hurts to Move—Canadian Orthopaedic Foundation http://whenithurtstomove.org
Adhesive capsulitis of shoulder. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: https://www.dynamed.com/condition/adhesive-capsulitis-of-shoulder . Updated June 22, 2018. Accessed September 23, 2019.
Frozen Shoulder. Ortho Info—American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons. Available at: http://orthoinfo.aaos.org/topic.cfm?topic=a00071. Updated March 2018. Accessed September 23, 2019.
Le HV, Lee SJ, Nazarian A, Rodriguez EK. Adhesive capsulitis of the shoulder: review of pathophysiology and current clinical treatments. Shoulder Elbow. 2017 Apr;9(2):75-84.
Struyf F and Meeus M. Current evidence on physical therapy in patients with adhesive capsulitis: What are we missing? Clinical Rheumatology. 2014;33(5):593-600.
11/6/2014 DynaMed Plus Systematic Literature Surveillance http://www.dynamed.com/topics/dmp~AN~T113935/Adhesive-capsulitis-of-shoulder : Page MJ, Green S, et al. Electrotherapy modalities for adhesive capsulitis (frozen shoulder). Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2014;10:CD011324.
1/21/2015 DynaMed Plus Systematic Literature Surveillance http://www.dynamed.com/topics/dmp~AN~T113935/Adhesive-capsulitis-of-shoulder : Chen CY, Hu CC, et al. Extracorporeal shockwave therapy improves short-term functional outcomes of shoulder adhesive capsulitis. J Shoulder Elbow Surgery. 2014 Dec;23(12):1843-1851.