So You Have a Frozen Shoulder. Can Your Chiropractor Help?
WHAT IS FROZEN SHOULDER SYNDROME?
If you have experienced severe pain and stiffness in your shoulder, you may have Frozen Shoulder Syndrome. This condition is formally known as, Adhesive Capsulitis. The signs and symptoms of this condition usually come on gradually, growing worse over time. FSS, (Frozen Shoulder Syndrome) is unique because it can last from one to three years.
People who are recovering from a medical condition or procedure that prevents the arm from moving are at a higher risk of developing FSS. An example of this would be a stroke victim. Many people who suffer a stroke, are left paralyzed on one side of their body. The immobility of the shoulder can result in FSS.
Lets discuss some of the symptoms, causes, and risk factors of FSS and how your chiropractor may help you recover.
Frozen Shoulder Syndrome usually comes on slowly and the condition is broken down into three stages. Each of these stages can last for months at a time.
- Freezing Stage: Range of motion in the shoulder becomes limited, and any movement causes pain.
- Frozen Stage: Pain may begin to decrease in this stage, but your shoulder may become more stiff, and movement becomes even more difficult.
- Thawing Stage: The range of motion in your shoulder improves.
Doctors aren’t totally sure why FSS occurs, but there are known correlations. Such as, people with diabetes, or injuries and conditions that immobilize the shoulder for long periods of time, as discussed earlier with stroke victims.
So whats going on inside the shoulder? The tendons, ligaments and bones that construct the shoulder joint are encased in a capsule of connective tissue. When a patient is suffering from FSS, the capsule thickens and tightens around the shoulder joint, restricting movement.
WHO IS AT RISK
With every condition, certain people are at a higher risk than others to develop FSS. We’ve already mentioned stroke victims and Diabetes, here is an in-depth list of diseases and injuries that can put you at a higher risk for FSS.
- Rotator cuff injury
- Broken arm
- Recovery from surgery
- Overactive thyroid (hyperthyroidism)
- Underactive thyroid (hypothyroidism)
- Cardiovascular disease
- Parkinson’s disease
CAN YOUR CHIROPRACTOR HELP?
The short answer is yes! Now here’s the long answer. Your chiropractor may examine your neck for vertebral subluxations if you are suffering form FSS. He or she is doing this because the nerves supplying the shoulder joint and the surrounding tissue originate in the neck.
Your chiropractor may also perform a targeted course of ultrasound and or cold laser therapy to the shoulder joint to reduce inflammation and improve range of motion.
When you chiropractor can restore proper movement in the spine, it may assist in nerve function in the shoulder, and may help in FSS recovery.
Your shoulder is a complicated joint, and if you have FSS, it may be advisable to check in with you chiropractor to evaluate the progress your making. After reading this article, you now know that it may take over a year to work your way through the three stages of FSS, you shouldn’t go through it alone! Your chiropractor can provide confidence that your rate of recovery is on schedule, and more important than that, he or she can ensure that your FSS isn’t causing other conditions.
If you are in search of a chiropractor in Brick, Toms River, or anywhere in Ocean County NJ, the Back and Neck Center of Brick can help. Our team of doctors have been serving patients for over 28 years!
Come see why the Back and Neck Center of Brick has been Voted Best Chiropractors in Ocean County 9 years in a row! From 2009 – 2017 by readers of the Asbury Park Press.