Frozen Shoulder is a condition in which the shoulder is completely or partially unmovable and extremely painful. Frozen shoulder can start from nowhere, but may be triggered by injury to the shoulder. The condition usually goes through three phases, starting with pain, followed by stiffness and finally the easing of pain and the return of most the movement. This process may take as long as two or more years.
Frozen shoulder has been associated with diabetes, high cholesterol, heart disease and Dupuytren's contracture. It may follow an injury to the shoulder or surgery.
The lining of the shoulder joint, the capsule, is a very flexible elastic structure allowing for the huge range of motion that the shoulder has. However, with a frozen shoulder this capsule (and its ligaments) becomes inflamed, swollen and contracted thus losing the normal elasticity and pain and stiffness set in.
Three stages of development:
Typical frozen shoulder develops slowly, and in three stages lasting approximately two years of left untreated: