Friday, May 4, 2012

What You Need To Know About Frozen Shoulder


by guest blogger Veronica Hayes

Frozen shoulder is a condition that can happen to anyone. It happens when the joint capsule of the shoulder becomes very inflamed, which causes the shoulder to become very stiff, with a loss of range of motion. There is no specific cause for frozen shoulder, but the most obvious symptom is pain. Your doctor can perform x-rays and an MRI, but it probably won't show anything. It is mainly diagnosed symptoms.

Before diagnosing you with frozen shoulder, a doctor will first have to rule out other conditions, such as arthritis, degenerative arthritis, and injury to the tendons around the shoulder. Once diagnosed, it can be a lengthy process to heal, and regaining full range of motion can typically take 6-9 months.


Symptoms

- Severe pain in your shoulder
- Stiff shoulder
- Difficulty with daily tasks
- loss of range of motion


Exams and Tests

- X-rays
- MRI
- Blood work


Treatment

- The pain is treated with anti-inflammatory medication
- Steroid injections may help decrease inflammation
- Intensive, daily physical therapy using stretching exercises, ultrasound, ice, and heat are common.
- Apply Moist Heat to the shoulder, which will help with pain relief
- Surgery may be necessary no results are seen from steroid injections, anti-inflammatory medication or physical therapy


Risk Factors For Frozen Shoulder

- Immobility for a period of time due to an arm fracture
- Diabetes
- Being over 40
- Males are slightly more prone
- Hyperthyroidism
- Hypothyroidism
- Cardiovascular disease
- Parkinson's disease


Prognosis

- If treated with anti-inflammatory medication, steroid injections, and physical therapy there is an excellent
chance your shoulder will be better within 9 months
- Without continued physical therapy, frozen shoulder may come back
- With no treatment at all, it may take 24 months to get better


Prevention

- Contact your physician immediately if you have shoulder pain that limits your range of motion
- Start physical therapy immediately

There are 3 stages to this condition; freezing, frozen, and thawing. Each stage can be extremely painful, but it's important to stick with the treatment your doctor recommends. Physical therapy is the most important part of the treatment, because if you don't get your shoulder movement back, you will suffer longer and may need surgery. Putting moist heat on your shoulder before physical therapy will loosen the muscle so you get more movement. You will have to continue physical therapy even after your shoulder is feeling better, or it will come back.
 
Veronica Hayes likes to write about health, her family & saving money at www.grouphealthinsurance.org.



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