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A genuine Frozen Shoulder is a very debilitating and painful condition. A frozen shoulder can last for a very long time, up to three years in severe cases.
The most recent research indicates that it's a problem with the muscles that support the shoulder, the Rotator Cuff. Why this condition manifests is still a mystery. Many very able people are trying to figure out what's underlying a frozen shoulder, but no one has yet come up with an answer.
What do we know so far ?
• Pathogenesis Unknown - no one has a clue why it happens.
• There are no diagnostic tests.
• There are no arthritic or degenerative changes in the joint.
• All active and passive range of movement test show deficits in movement.
• Results of traditional treatment - physiotherapy, mobilisation and stretching are unsatisfactory.
• The prognosis is good though - 90% to 100% full recovery in 2 to 3 years.
Currently there is no agreed protocol for treating a Genuine Frozen Shoulder.
Corticosteroid injections can give short term relief (for pain) but repeated injections can permanently damage the shoulder tissues. Immobilisation in a sling can reduce load through the painful shoulder joint, and help prevent painful jolting movements. In my experience acupuncture has not been helpful.
On the positive side however, there are some studies that are showing promising results for Shockwave Therapy.