adhesive capsulitis

by J.D. Roth

i went to the doctor today to see about my sore shoulder.

after taking down a little history of the problem, he poked and prodded my shoulder, lifted and lowered my arm, and had me perform a variety of twists and turns to test my range of motion.

in the end, he decided that i was suffering from adhesive capsulitis, or “frozen shoulder”. he noted that this condition was generally found in sedentary smokers. (while i may be somewhat sedentary (alright — maybe a lot sedentary), i’m not a smoker.) it can be found in anyone, though, and nobody really knows what causes it. (more articles on it can be found here, here, here, here, here and here.)

the most troubling fact to emerge from the research i’ve done is that the condition generally lasts a year or more (average recovery time is eighteen months). this is alarming.

let me be blunt: i am in a hell of a lot of pain. i can’t imagine being in this much pain for a year.

what can be done?

to start with, the doctor gave me a cortisone injection. in theory, this should relieve the inflammation in the shoulder. (in actuality, it’s just made the shoulder sorer, at least during these first few hours after the injection.)

he also upped my hydrocodone dosage from “one or two before bed” to “once every four hours”. and he gave me a stronger anti-inflammatory.

in the long-term, once the pain has been arrested, i’m too start a course of physical therapy. (actually, the doctor seemed a tad miffed that i was unable to lift my arm twenty minutes after he gave me the cortisone injection. sorry, doc. i gave it my best.)

i know all this talk about my ailment is wearisome. believe me: it’s even more wearisome to me. i get to look forward to another night of sleeping on the recliner in front of the tv, tossing and turning, waking every hour or two because of the pain, surfing through the endless sea of informercials and three’s company reruns.


On 14 October 2002 (05:18 AM),
maureen c said:

I had Adhesive Capsulitis 12 years ago in my left shoulder. Now I have it again in my right. I’m hoping to find a group of people who might want to start a chat room or bulletin board… gotta do something besides watching those reruns…

Let me know…

On 15 March 2003 (06:50 PM),
Carol E. said:

I was recently told by my doctor that I have adhesive capsulitis. My doctor didn’t explain much about it to me so I did some research of my own and what I found was not encouraging. I cannot imagine living with this much pain for a year or longer. I have been taking the anti-inflammatory medications for weeks and have had to stop due to stomach problems. I had an MRI a couple of days ago, don’t have results yet. The worst part is not being able to sleep at night! I’m worn out already and it’s only been 7 weeks.
I don’t know anyone personally who has had this. It’s nice to know someone else out there knows what I’m going through.

On 16 March 2003 (12:37 PM),
J.D. said:

Originally I thought I had a pinched nerve from playing soccer, but my doctor diagnosed it as adhesive capsulitis. Like you, I did research, and I was *not* encouraged but what I found: people with this condition seem to suffer for months, if not years. Fortunately, the condition lasted less than a month for me. Others, such as yourself, are not so lucky.

I’m not sure what you can do if anti-inflammatories aren’t working for you. I took Alleve and/or ibuprofen, depending on the day. My doctor also gave me a prescription for hydrocodone, which is like vicodin, which is derived, distantly, from opium. This didn’t alleviate the pain — I always felt it — but it did make it less significant. By this I mean that I could tell that the shoulder still hurt, and I didn’t regain *any* range of motion with it, but my brain didn’t focus on the pain. Unfortunately, taking a hydrocodone pill every three or four hours rendered me a zombie.

I wish I could give you more encouragement. The best I can offer is: hang in there. You might get lucky like I did and have the pain just go away!

On 25 March 2003 (12:03 PM),
suzanne said:

I was just diagnosed today with adhesive capsulitis. My shoulder has been hurting for about 6 months and I am getting very depressed. UGH! The doctor prescribed ultracet for pain, something to help me sleep, and physical therapy.
I started looking on the internet for information and came across this. Are you feeling better and what has helped?

Best wishes,


On 26 March 2003 (11:55 AM),
Linda said:

Hi Everyone…….Don’t understand this chat group….with NO e-mail to write back to each other to help one another. I too need to talk to someone that is going through this horrible pain. Please e-mail me at [email protected] Linda

On 01 April 2003 (01:07 PM),
Sharron said:

My arm and shoulder had been hurting for the past few weeks and the pain would be so bad that I would have to just grasp my arm and hold my breath!!! Went to two bone crackers with no luck. Got on the web and looked up arm pain and got to and was like WOW they are talking about me. I am also distressed about the length of time this is going to last…and sleeping is getting harder all the time as I love to sleep with my right arm (bad one) under my pillow…goodbye for that.
Well,my oldest daughter is a Doctor..and she said that is sure what I do have….I have no medical insurance and from reading all I have about this it would seem to me that getting a bunch of tests is a waste of money and the injections can even make it worse. I would love to hear from anyone else that has been though this, tell me how long you have had it and how bad did it get? I can still use the computer…
just the range of motion is what is bad now.
Look foward to hearing from any of you.
I am 55 female.

On 17 October 2003 (08:31 PM),
susan said:

I had surgery for this 2 months ago and I still cannot put my arm behind my back or on my hip..physical therapy is painful and I ahve been going 3 times a week. My arm is better than it was before surgery ,as it was frozen in front and I could not lift it and the pain was enough to make me fall to my knees…sleep was the surgery was helpful as I do not have pain all day, just when I try to move it where it doesn’t want to go, but the pain is tolerable. I take one half lorcet before therapy.
The surgery shaved off a bone spur, fixed a rent in my shoulder cuff and fixed an impingement, there was also a manipulation of the shoulder to break up the adhesions. The recovery from surgery was the most pain I have ever felt, I cried for several days and the pain pills didn’t seem to help…if you have surgery take your pain pills before the nerve block wears off! The pain backs off after a few days and becomes manageable but takes a good month to lighten up.
I still wake up at night but it is getting better! I look forward to the day when I ahve my arm back to normal ,or close to normal range, and hopefully no pain! hang in there !!

On 13 November 2003 (04:19 PM),
olga said:

Just had an arthroscopy done on my frozen shoulder
the doc broke up the scar tissue, PT is a killer
my frozen shoulder was so bad that I could not use
my arm.It still hurts terribly, really no better
after surgery except some increased movement. Pain
pills are a joke even Vicodin. I have had this for
over a year. Still can’t sleep at night toss and
turn every 2-3 hours. anyone out there has any
new thoughts on the matter. I am also using
the Topical Verapamile, just started, I need to
use it 60 days x 2. By the way I am a nurse,
believe me I have thought of everything. I have
heard there is some experimental trials in NY>
will research info.

On 10 January 2004 (07:31 PM),
Mary said:

I too have had surgery for adhesive capsulitis and a manipulation as well! Very painful! I had surgery back in March of 03 and March of ’04 is coming up! Iam still in P.T. once a week, but I still have pain-bearable mor or less, but I don’t think it will ever be the same again! Iam starting to wonder if it just me, or what! I still can’t sleep on it and night is the worst time! Anyone have any suggestions?? E-mail me directly if you wish! Thanks, Mary

On 12 January 2004 (06:48 PM),
Charlotte said:

Have developed “frozen shoulder” on my right side – had it about 6 years ago on left.
I have a specific question re the 3phases..freezing, frozen and thawed. Apparently, the early, ‘freezing’ stage is most acute and I understand that practically none of the therapies: physical, drug, surgical are effective during this phase.
WEll, that is where I am and about to invest 600-700 dollars in deep tissue massage. It brought the other shoulder back years ago, but I believe I was at a different phase.

Does anyone have a good understanding of what’s possible in the various phases?

Thanks, Charlotte

On 12 January 2004 (06:48 PM),
Charlotte said:

Have developed “frozen shoulder” on my right side – had it about 6 years ago on left.
I have a specific question re the 3phases..freezing, frozen and thawed. Apparently, the early, ‘freezing’ stage is most acute and I understand that practically none of the therapies: physical, drug, surgical are effective during this phase.
WEll, that is where I am and about to invest 600-700 dollars in deep tissue massage. It brought the other shoulder back years ago, but I believe I was at a different phase.

Does anyone have a good understanding of what’s possible in the various phases?

Thanks, Charlotte

On 18 January 2004 (09:51 PM),
christie reid said:

Reading the posts don’t give much comfort. Any advise before its too late for me!!!
My dr. wants to schedule manipulation under anthesia next week for frozen shoulder. Somehow Im wondering if I really want this done. Could I possibly get thru this without the surgery. Im a sucker when it comes to pain.

On 22 January 2004 (09:05 AM),
Peeps said:


It has been really interesting to read the comments here from fellow frozen shoulder sufferers. For myself, the fact that nothing much seems to work and that it lasts for at least a year (!) has been some comfort. I began to feel I was just useless. I was sent to a chiropractor by my Personal Trainer and the arm got steadily worse!

My shoulder began to freeze in July last year and now has very little range of movement. The question I would like answered is “If you do nothing at all and wait for it to unfreeze, can you start physiotherapy at that stage?” I find exercises quite painful and really annoying! Lack of sleep is a problem too.

The worst bit for me has been a few occasions when I have put my hand out to stop from tripping over, or got an electric shock off the car and grabbed the arm back quickly. The pain was so intense I just had to squat down, hold my arm and swear (A LOT!!).

I am still looking for answers but mainly waiting to unfreeze and then I might think about exercises. I swim, if you can call it that, in a very leisurely fashion. It’s nice to have the arm float free in the water.

Good luck everyone.

Will report back if a miracle happens!

On 03 February 2004 (05:19 PM),
maureen said:

I found a GREAT forum for frozen shoulder. I’ve been a contributor for more than a year, and there are lots of people on it, with lots of great stories, support and information. Here is the site:

You have to register to contribute, but it’s fast and easy and I never get any spam from them.

See you there!

— Maureen

On 11 February 2004 (05:32 PM),
Joanne said:

Hi, I was wondering if anyone knows the difference between FS occuring after rotator cuff repair as compared to spontaneously ???? I have it after a rotator cuff repair, and I wish I never did it!!! I am going to fairly aggresive PT and have already done the manipulation +cortisone . Rotator cuff surgery was in November and manipulation was 2 weeks ago. The problem I am having is that my Dr. acts so surprised by my pain! He continuously wants me to go off or decrease my pain pills (tylenol with codeine at present) I don’t sleep well. The only thing that helps at night is ice. I leave it on until it’s warm………….. My Dr. wants to do another MRi (one after surgery showed Maybe a new tear in the cuff) I am going to get another opinion but any comments????? This guy is supposed to be the best and people think I’m crazy!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! [email protected]

On 26 February 2004 (08:16 AM),
pippa said:

Ohmigosh! It sounds very similar to what I am going through. I had bone spur/rotator cuff surgery 10 weeks ago, and have completely hit a wall. I can passively lift my arm straight up, but can only raise it by itself about 100 degrees. I can see in the mirror that there is no rotation in the joint at all – it looks like a baseball on top raising. My doctor just says, “That’s all you can do? Keep working,” but there has been little to no change for weeks. I keep beating myself up because I’m not progressing, but then started looking at what was going on. No meds have been prescribed, so I’ve started treating myself: aspirin for inflamation, heating pads and BenGay-type rubs for circulation, have started taking glucosamine and MSM – and now my insurance plan’s PT coverage is running out (20 visits per calendar year). If this is frozen shoulder and time is necessary to heal, I wonder if I should continue at $100/visit, when these treatments are not helping (doing my exercises at home, of course)? And has anyone tried the Neil-Asher treatments ( I am so ready to be normal again! and so frustrated!!

On 15 March 2004 (07:18 PM),
Cyndy said:

I share everyone’s frustrations. My doc also wants to get aggressive. I’m only 5 months into this and am wondering if I should go ahead. It sounds tempting to get some pain relief, but there’s always the chance that it will be worse afterwards. One thing I’ve tried that helps some is a salve called Unkers. Some oldtimers at my church swear by it. When you use it and then apply a heating pad, it sort of intensifies the heat and eases the muscle pain some. You can order it on the net. I hope everyone has a TENS unit. You can’t use it 24/7, but when it’s really bad or you have to be sitting in a meeting, it really helps. Also found some research that says psychological stress and the weather make the pain worse. (As if being in constant pain isn’t stressful!) All the best to fellow sufferers.

On 16 March 2004 (07:36 AM),
janet said:

8 yrs ago, i had frozen shoulder, by the time i went to doc, so much muscle had wasted. Went to pt 3x weekly for 6 wks, stopped going and did exercises at home…..cured…now, i have a problem in other shoulder….did not feel quite the same , but told it is frozen shoulder,rotator cuff tear. Going for MRI today—doc also want to manipulate possibly depending on MRi—very limited motion up, back—-hurts to lift patients on my job=

On 16 April 2004 (10:12 PM),
Juli said:

I too,have adhesive capsulitis in my left shoulder. This was quite a surprise to me as I have always been physically active and my chosen profession is massage therapy. I have been a massage therapist for 17 years and have addressed FS on many occaisions. Two years ago I began teaching massage therapy and became somewhat inactive as a practitioner. Inactivity, I have since found, is one of the major contributors to FS. One of the most important discoveries I have made is that it really helps to drink water on a regular basis. We are all human and it is easy to overlook drinking water for other more satisfying beverages. Most times, FS is medically addressed with Occupational Therapy (OT), Physical Therapy (PT), Cortisone injections, or various approaches with surgery. Sometimes this works. However, alternative methods with specific massage applications can bring relief, allow for sleep, increase range of motion (ROM) and relieve FS altogether. I too, (even though an MT) have tried going to chiropractors, doctors, PT’s and OT’s for a diagnosis and relief with little or no success, til I met an OT at the VA hospital with years of success working with FS sufferers. She was the first to suspect I might have frozen shoulder. I took it for granted that I just “overused” my shoulder with years of performing massage, but this did not make sense to me, because I did not have it on the right shoulder. After my referred visit to Osteo at the VA, the diagnosis was confirmed. The doctor laid out all my options, but did not have any inkling if or how massage would or could address my pain and lack of movement. Personally, I knew better and decided right then to include massage into my rehab plan. I opted for the protocol that my past clients have utilized and that is consistant water intake, little or no caffiene (affects nerve activity within muscles and tendons), nothing that would dehydrate my tissues (diuretics, water pills, or alcoholic drinks), OT and massage therapy. I am in my second week of this routine and already I am enjoying more movement with less pain. (I can even put my arm behind my back to zip up a skirt-something I have not been able to do for 18 months!) My OT has me doing several exercises, but not to the point of pain. Four of the most beneficial exercises for me use a pully and hanging weights. The pully exercises use a portable pully that fits over any door and once the door is closed you place a chair about 1-2 feet facing away from the door. Sitting in the chair, you would grasp the handles with thumbs posistioned in the “up” position and pulling on the handles, raise the unaffected arm first and then the affected side. Once the affected side is stretched to capacity, hold it there for 5-10 seconds to maximize the stretch. Do not pull so hard that there is excruciating pain. This only aggravates the stretch response (built into muscles for protection against tears in the tissue) Eventually your time for holding the stretch will increase and your movement will improve. Another exercise with the pully is to stretch from a “side-sitting” position with the affected side closest to the door, but place the chair so that the shoulder is in line with the pully. Sitting too far back or too far forward will make the exercises ineffective. Again, have the chair sitting out from the door 1-2 feet. As you gain more movement, the chair can be moved further out from the door. Same with the previous exercise. The “hanging weight” exercises consist of a two pound wrist weight wrapped around the wrist and performing small (really small at first) circles while bending at the waist and supporting your weight on a kitchen table or countertop. Ten (10) clockwise and ten (10) counter-clockwise, three times a day. As this gets easier, you may increase number of circles and make the “circular path” wider. At this time I have increased my hanging weight to 5 pounds. This exercise has a “traction” effect on the glenohumeral joint, pulling the humerous gently and restoring neurological muscle memory to nerve proprioceptors found in tendons and muscles. (Re-educates tissues what it is like to move again). As far as my experience with getting massage, it is important to find a therapist that is educated in the area of neuromuscular therapy/re-education. Active resisted movement, trigger point therapy, post-isometric relaxation, myofascial release, along with cross-fiber friction should be used to address the rotator cuff muscles (Supraspinatus, Infraspinatus, Teres Minor and Subscapularis). Also, it is highly beneficial to have the massage therapist concentrate where the Subscapularis and Serratus Posterior Superior meet and glide (move) across each other. In most instances the Latissimus Dorsi and Serratus Anterior areas will need to be addressed as well. Of course, during all this pain the client has endured, his or her breathing will tend to be shallow and this severly affects the Scalenes and Sternocleidomastoids (neck muscles) which are attached to the 1st and 2nd ribs. The massage therapist will have to address any tightness existing there and help restore diaphragmatic breathing- also known as “stomach breathing”, filling the lungs with air using the diaphram first- this gives those neck muscles a vacation!! I must disclose that this may not be the routine for you and I have no scientific data to support my claims. I am basing this on my years of experience (17) as a massage therapist addressing FS and what my clients have told me helps them and on what has personally helped me. I highly recommend that you find an Occupational Therapist to help you with your rehabilitation exercise plan as they are not as aggressive as Physical Therapists and I find that the intricate movements my OT has given me have helped a great deal. If you have additional questions or concerns, please feel free to email me using frozen shoulder or adhesive capsulitis in the subject matter line at [email protected] in light and health, JULI

On 03 March 2005 (10:01 AM),
Von said:

I am also part of this club. Began having pain about one year ago, but truly froze in the past few months. Have gone through Arthrogram, MRI, seven weeks of physical therapy, and acupuncture. ACUPUNCTURE is the only thing that has helped the pain. I have had five treatments of acupuncture. She thought she could cure me in ten. I may have too severe a case to actually cure in ten treatments, but I cannot believe the aid I received in the pain level. I have never taken any prescription drugs for pain, so I was 24/7 in pain. She recommended White Willow Bark as a natural form of aspirin. It helps greatly without the risk of stomach or liver damage.
My doctor still feels I have not gained motion like he had hoped. He wants to do the scope and manipulation. I am hesitant about this. I need advice from those that have had it. Did you gain enough motion to warrant it?

On 16 March 2005 (12:22 PM),
Debby said:

I feel everyone’s pain. I too have a FS. I went through several months of pain before seeing an Ortho surgeon. I’ve been in therapy for 3 months. In my opinion I have seen a 70% improvement. I think alot of that has to do with keeping up with the exercises at home. I went back to the Ortho for a follow up to see how I was doing.He said I could either live with the pain or do surgery. I requested more PT. The therapist is trying to talk me into surgery. After all the research I have done I don’t want to. I’m going to wait about a year or so and see if it gets even better. In the meantime it’s very important to keep up the exercises. Heat and Ice seems to help also.
One thing does puzzle me, with all the technoligy why can’t they cure us?

On 08 April 2005 (03:45 PM),
Estalyn said:

Hello – I also was diagnosed with FS after having rotator cuff repair in December 2004. Last week my doctor did a manipulation under anesthesia and what he called arthroscopic lysis of adhesions. He implanted a pain pump for a few days which helped the P.T. maneuver my arm in all sorts of directions. Have to say that my ROM is so much better one week post-op. Hope everyone is feeling better soon.

On 13 May 2005 (06:08 PM),
Natalie said:

Hi, everyone. I have had frozen shoulder for about 9 or 10 months, though it didn’t get extremely bad until last October when I had a benign cyst removed from the shoulder. (I had been thinking my worsening shoulder pain was from the cyst – – silly me.)
ONE THING THAT HELPED A LOT with the night pain… my physical therapist told me to sleep sitting up – – like in a recliner or propped with pillows. It really did help a lot with that horrible, horrible pain at night. I still would wake up around 3:30 or 4:00 am and sleep fitfully until time to get up, but that was MUCH better than how it had been. Apparently the pull of gravity keeping the joint slightly open keeps the nerves from being so irritated. Nights are the worst.
I had the manipulation done in March and it did help. I had a great deal of improvement in motion, pain and that horrible constant feeling you have like something is grabbing your shoulder blade and pulling it. But, though things are better, I’m far from cured. Today a nurse went to take my blood pressure and put the cuff on the upper arm and pressurized it – – I nearly jumped out of my skin, the pain was so intense. So much for my nice normally low b.p. readings.
I just can’t wait until this is over. Just to have two normal shoulders again seems like such a gift. In the meantime, I grit my teeth and keep doing my exercises.

On 28 May 2005 (08:25 AM),
Carol said:

I developed frozen shoulder out of the blue in Oct. 04 at the age of 42. In Feb. 05 I was diagnosed and started p.t. twice a week. After 2 months, I had not improved at all, and my doctor insisted that I needed a manipulation. She sent me to an orthopedist. I did not want surgery, however, so the orthopedist agreed to prescribe more p.t. After 2 more months of p.t. plus 5 sessions of osteopathic manipulation, my range of motion has improved somewhat, and the pain has diminished. I saw the orthopedist again last week, and he thinks if I continue improving as I have, in another 3 months, this won’t even be an issue for me anymore. So, this summer I’ll be having more p.t. and osteopathy. By the way, I highly recommend osteopathic manipulation! It helped me a lot.

On 06 June 2005 (10:38 PM),
Amanda said:

I’m a 33 year old female and i have adhesive capsulitis on my right shoulder. The pain is unbearable! especially at night. I decided to drink more water, lots of water! and cut down on the caffiene, and stretch every hour very slowly with pain killers (2 advils 2 extra strength tylenol)It does get frustrating but you really have to discipline yourself. Within 3 days MAJOR difference.
Pain is alot more milder. Hydrating your body and and keeping your shoulder moving really helps. i can finally get some sleep.

On 25 June 2005 (09:33 AM),
Lizzi said:

Gosh, it’s good to see I’m not the only person suffering from this and there are some people out there that can understand. I have capsulitis in the left shoulder and though I am going through physio, I don’t see much improvement yet. Nights are the worse and it really affect your daily activities and life. One of the worst things also is lack of understanding from some people who just can’t understand what the big deal is. So, it’s nice to see I’m not alone. Good luck to all and if anyone knows of a miracle, please let me know 🙂

On 06 July 2005 (11:27 AM),
Sham said:

hi, i’m in my final year studying osteopathic medicine. in my clinic so far, i have only seen this condition once and the best exercise tip is to stand in front of a wall facing it or facing parallel to it, put your hand out as much as you can so you touch the wall with your index and middle fingers. Now perform a walking action up the wall (until you feel pain). Now mark your limit on the wall and do this everyday 20 times, you should see the marking on the wall go higher and higher. See results in one month but remember, it will hurt, you’ve got to push yourself to the limit. Good luck!

On 06 July 2005 (11:31 AM),
Sham said:

hi, i’m in my final year studying osteopathic medicine. in my clinic so far, i have only seen this condition once and the best exercise tip is to stand in front of a wall facing it or facing parallel to it, put your hand out as much as you can so you touch the wall with your index and middle fingers. Now perform a walking action up the wall (until you feel pain). Now mark your limit on the wall and do this everyday 20 times. The other exercise is to lean forward and let your arm hang beside you and perform a pendulum motion as much as you can everyday ( helps the blood supply to the muscles so they are not wasted. You should see the marking on the wall go higher and higher. See results in one month but remember, it will hurt, you’ve got to push yourself to the limit. Good luck!

On 14 July 2005 (01:56 PM),
Bonnie said:

I’m not sure there is a miracle but I am slowly recovering from a FS without a manipulation. Mine started in January worsened for a few months but now is getting better since the cortisone shot 6 weeks ago. The physical therapy/exercise in the beginning only aggravated the pain and made it worse. The improvement began when I quit PT! Besides the Cortisone shot, drinking lots of water, and keeping my shoulders warm especially at night has helped. Beware of cold air conditioning! Now that most of the pain has subsided, I am doing the usual shoulder stretching exercises. In another six weeks, if my shoulder is not completely better, my doctor suggested an additional cortisone shot. I understand the sleepless nights, I understand trying to live in constant pain with a grimace on my face. My FS is slowly getting better and it feels good to smile.

On 20 July 2005 (11:27 AM),
Linda said:

After reading Natalie’s comment on Adhesive Capsulitis in May of 2005, I am now curious as to whether my condition is also the result of having had a cyst removed from my shoulder. The surgery was done over two years ago but the scar lies directly over where my pain is. I’ve been through PT, home stretching and it is still bothering me. My range of motion is better but the pain is not gone. It’s been almost ten months since my initial injury. ( I thought I had injured it by reaching into the backseat of my car from the front.) I’ve been to two doctor’s now and both believe my cyst removal is just a coincidence, I’m doubtful though. I’m now to go through another course of PT for 6 to 8 weeks and if my pain is not gone the Ortho Doc wants to operate. I have lot’s of funky sounds going on when I rotate my shoulder, crepetis I’m told. I’m not sure if the spelling is correct for that term. Anyhow, I’m sorry for everyone suffering with this, it bites! I can’t sleep unless I take something to help relax me. I miss putting my arm under my pillow at night and resting on my left side. My sympathies to all of you Adhesive Capsulitis sufferers. I’ve at least been validated by the comments, I agree, it hurts like crazy.
EMail me if you wish, [email protected]

On 24 July 2005 (02:49 PM),
Mary said:

I too have had and am dealing with Adhesive capsulitis! I’ve had two manipulations on right side! I’ve had a total of 5 surgeries on right shoulder! A year ago i came down with it on my left side!I’ve only had one surgery on left side to date! So, essentially I’ve been dealing with this condition for a couple years! The good news is, the last manipulation finally did it! I can reach to 163.! Iam happy with that! That’s reaching straight out and up! Once I get the right one squared away, we get to work on the left one! Seems like it’s never ending! As for myself,I have tried to keep some sence of humor! It’s tough though! It’s true that people who haven’t had it, have absolutely no clue! Good luck to everyone else! Just be patient! Iam trying, as i still have some pain Iam dealing with on a daily and nightly bases!

On 20 August 2005 (07:42 AM),
trevor said:

A UK Osteopath in London (Dr Simeone Niel-Asher) claims to have meade alot of progress in the treatment of Frozen Shoulder
He claims to be able to ‘cure’ it in several one hour sessions and he has trained a few USA practitioners
I am moving to London soon and I hope to see this guy personally but he also has self help CDs and books on his website

On 22 August 2005 (12:22 PM),
Janice said:

I have had frozen shoulder for about 18 months total. Went through 3 1/2 months of physical therapy and 2 cortisone injection and was better for several months but the pain has steadily gotten worse and so has the stiffening over the summer. I am to have a manipulation under anesthesia in 2 weeks with physical therapy daily for 3 weeks after this. I think he is doing a nerve block at the same time. I was hoping to take only about 3 days off of work and then go back to work, working around by physical therapy. Is this realstic? I would think the pain would be better.

On 30 August 2005 (02:12 AM),
Gail (Australia) said:

You guys are really not cheering me up at all !!
I had a yachting accident 10 weeks ago and was diagnosed with a full thickness rotator cuff tear. I had surgery six weeks ago (unbelievably painful !!) and was told the day after surgery that I didn’t have a R/C tear at all and that they actually found a fracture.
Lucky me – both my x-ray and ultra sound scan were wrong !!
To top it all off – I went back for my final post-op checkup today to be told that I have a frozen shoulder.
I have had Physio Therapy the whole time since my injury but obviously it did nothing to prevent me developing this problem.
As with all of you – the pain in unbelievable (and unrelenting) and sleep is a thing of the past.
I wish you all (and me) a speedy recovery 🙂

On 10 September 2005 (07:55 AM),
cj said:

I have an appt. with ortho next week. Was told by another doc that I have FS. Initially, pain was mostly shoulder/neck but now right arm is severely affected and last few days, there is numbing involved. MY QUESTION: I have lyme disese and really want to avoid the cortisone type treatment as I’ve been advised that this is very counter-productive for those with lyme.. terrible for immune system. What is the chance of me getting good treatment without it involving some type of cortisones??
Thanks, cj

On 13 September 2005 (07:59 AM),
suzanReither said:

I don’t know whether physical therapy is good or not. Could someone advise me before I start. I am in excruciating pain at night and have been for over 3 months.
Thank you.

On 26 September 2005 (11:49 PM),
mike said:


My frozen shoulder diagnosis came three weeks ago. I am a fiddler, and it is my right shoulder. I play fiddle right-handed, though fortunately I am a lefty at everything else.

I have to say that I’ve suffered a number of injuries along life’s road, including a compound fracture of a leg (broken in three places, ankle broken diving accident) and have never had anything nearly this painful.

I’m unable to play fiddle, of course. Physical therapy doesn’t seem to be helping yet. Have only had a couple weeks of it. It hurts virtually all the time, and the only way I can sleep is to take three or four Lortab 10/500s.

Please tell me this will get better. This condition is redefining my concept of agony. I know it will, but I need to hear from someone who’s actually been through it.

On 09 October 2005 (02:13 PM),
debbie said:

I’ve been researching FS ever since my right shoulder froze suddenly in July. The most frustrating thing is not knowing what treatment is best. I’ve had 20 physical therapy treatments with very little improvement in ROM; however, the pain is considerably better. No way to know if that is due to PT or whether it would be getting better anyway on its own. My PT is VERY aggressive – lots of pain, which my ortho told me to expect. Despite the PT, my doctor wants to do a closed manipulation b/c of so little improvement in ROM. I am 52 and ordinarily VERY physically active, so those who attributed this condition to sedentary lifestyle, I don’t think so. I was doing over an hour of aerobic exercise, usually running or biking, six days a week when this occured. Anyway, what concerns me is that the therapy causes lots of pain and not in the shoulder. It’s usually in my arm, my bicep muscle (even get bruises on arm after therapy) or back. The therapy, by its very nature, puts stress on all of the ligaments, tendons, and muscles as the PT tries to increase ROM. Also, I have had so much stiffness in my neck. I can’t even hold a book and read or sit in one position for more than a few minutes without stiffness in my neck. Does everyone have this problem? It’s much better than intense pain, but makes if virtually impossible to return to work. Has anyone had any negative effects after manipulation? Should I stick with the PT longer?

Updated: 04 September 2002

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