What are the first signs of frozen shoulder

What are the first signs of frozen shoulder?

Frozen shoulder is also known as adhesive capsulitis. It is a painful condition in which the glenohumeral joint loses its normal range of motion due to injury or inflammation. The term “frozen shoulder” should only be used to describe a well-defined condition characterized by progressive shoulder discomfort and stiffness that heals typically on its own after about 18 months. But what are the first signs of frozen shoulder would be? In this article, we are going to describe the first signs of frozen shoulder!

What is frozen shoulder?

Synovial fluid is a liquid that fills a sack in your shoulder (called the joint capsule). The capsule is flexible and can expand and contract in response to movement. The fluid works the same way as oil does in an automobile; it keeps your joints lubricated, so they move smoothly and painlessly.

When the shoulder capsule is damaged, it begins to contract. It hurts to move your shoulder because your shoulder bone doesn’t have enough freedom to rotate. It starts to “freeze,” and you lose your entire range of motion.

The joint might lose some of its synovial fluid as a result of injury and inflammation. If left untreated, scar tissue forms between the capsule and the tip of the shoulder bone, limiting your shoulder’s mobility even further.

The illness is known as a “frozen” shoulder because the more discomfort a person feels, the less inclined to lift their shoulder. The shoulder capsule thickens and tightens due to lack of use, making the shoulder even more difficult to move — it becomes “frozen” in its place. Shoulder exercises and pain relievers can be used to treat it.

What are the causes of frozen shoulder?

It’s not always evident what causes a frozen shoulder. However, some populations are more vulnerable. Women are more prone than men to develop frozen shoulders, and people between the ages of 40-60 are more likely to exhibit it.

If you’re recovering from a medical condition like a stroke or surgery like a mastectomy that prevents you from using your arm, your risk may increase.

You may also be at a higher risk if you have specific medical issues. If you have diabetes, you may be more susceptible to frozen shoulder. Frozen shoulder affects approximately 10% to 20% of patients with diabetes.

Frozen shoulder has also been connected to other medical issues such as heart disease, thyroid disease, and Parkinson’s disease.

What are the first signs of frozen shoulder?

It would be best if you started the treatment of frozen shoulder as early as possible so that it doesn’t “freeze” completely, leaving you with little ability to move your arm. The first signs of frozen shoulder are-

  • Pain in your shoulder when you try to move it
  • Stiffness on your shoulder
  • Can’t able to sleep on the side with shoulder pain
  • Sleeping problems due to severe pain
  • Upper arm discomfort

The above signs are the first signs of frozen shoulder. But according to the research, frozen shoulder proceeds through three overlapping clinical phases. Those are-

Freezing stage

  • Every time you move your shoulder, you experience pain (sometimes severe).
  • It gradually worsens over time and may hurt worse at night.
  • It can last anywhere between 6 and 9 months.
  • You have a limited range of motion with your shoulder.

Frozen stage

  • Your pain may subside, but your stiffness will worsen.
  • Moving your shoulder gets more complicated, and ordinary activities become more challenging.
  • This stage might span anywhere from 4 to 12 months.

Thawing stage

  • Your range of motion gradually returns to normal.
  • It could take anything from six months and two years.

Despite this, some research implies that the disease is self-limiting and can continue for three years. Other researchers have found that up to 40% of individuals may experience lasting symptoms and movement restrictions after three years.

Persistent pain and long-term disability are estimated to affect 15% of people. Effective treatments that reduce the duration of symptoms and disability have a significant impact on morbidity reduction.

How do you know if you’re getting frozen shoulder?

The most common symptoms of frozen shoulder are discomfort and stiffness, which make movement difficult or impossible. You will most likely experience a dull or achy pain in one shoulder if you have a frozen shoulder. The shoulder muscles that wrap over the top of your arm may also be in pain.

Will frozen shoulder go away on its own?

The majority of frozen shoulders improve on their own over 6 to 12 months. However, it can take up to 18 to 36 months in some cases for healing. Return of motion is usually gradual without treatment, but regular, full-range mobility may never return. For that, the patient should take appropriate treatment as soon as possible from the physiotherapy doctor.

What is the fastest way to get rid of a frozen shoulder?

By applying an ice pack or a bag of frozen vegetables to the shoulder for 10-15 minutes a few times a day can also help to reduce pain. You may be given a corticosteroid injection into the shoulder joint or soft tissues.


Here is all the about of first signs of frozen shoulder. If you have any questions regarding this topic or anything about frozen shoulder then please comment below. We will try to provide you with the solution from our expert team! Thank you!



"Hasan", I am a physiotherapy Doctor. I have completed my B.S.c course (4 years) under Rajshahi University, Faculty of Medicine, Rajshahi. Currently I am working as a clinical physiotherapist at a renowned physiotherapy center and I am continuing my MPT (Master's of physiotherapy) degree at CRP, Savar.

View all posts by MAHMUDUL HASAN →

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