Houston Methodist. Leading Medicine

Shoulder FAQ

Question:

I've had two months of physical therapy for my frozen shoulder. I'm still in a lot of pain, and it doesn't seem like the movement is improving. Will the problem go away by itself if I just stop treatment altogether?

Answer:

Not likely. There is general agreement that symptoms of frozen shoulder usually don't go away by themselves. In addition to physical therapy, other treatment options may be suggested by your doctor. One option is to inject the shoulder joint with a steroid and/or painkiller. The shot can help ease pain and allow greater movement with the shoulder stretches used by your therapist.

If this doesn't improve pain and movement, your doctor may recommend shoulder manipulation. Patients are given anesthesia for this treatment. While they sleep, the doctor forcefully stretches the tight shoulder. Manipulation helps break up scar tissue adhesions in the joint. Patients often show immediate improvements in shoulder motion. Many patients achieve full resolution of symptoms within four months of the procedure.



*Disclaimer:* The information contained herein is compiled from a variety of sources. It may not be complete or timely. It does not cover all diseases, physical conditions, ailments or treatments. The information should NOT be used in place of visit with your healthcare provider, nor should you disregard the advice of your health care provider because of any information you read in this topic.
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