Frozen Shoulder

What Is It?

"Frozen" shoulder is defined as a painful stiff shoulder. It is also known as Capsulitis.

The capsule is a thin, loose, fibrous covering for the shoulder joint.

Adhesions develop within the capsule of the shoulder joint causing the shoulder to get stiff and painful.


The pain is often described as a deep, dull, aching pain.
The pain is made worse with shoulder movement and sleeping on the affected side.

Usually x-rays are negative.
Arthritic changes may be seen due to shoulder wear and tear.
Osteoporotic changes may also be seen due to the lack of shoulder use.

What Causes It?
  • Type of trauma to shoulder (fracture, dislocation)
  • Immobilization of the shoulder
  • Post-surgery
  • Undetermined origin

Stage 1: "Freezing" Stage
Pain felt in and around the joint at the end range of shoulder movement
Stiffness is not a problem

Stage 2: "Frozen" Stage
Shoulder becomes stiff
Pain levels decrease
Noticeable decrease in functional ability of shoulder

Stage 3: "Thawing" Stage
Little to no pain felt in shoulder
Shoulder movement very restricted
Loss of muscle strength in and around shoulder
End of stage shows gradual return of shoulder movement

Will Physiotherapy Help Me?

A physiotherapist will assess your condition and determine the origin of your pain. Your treatment plan will address the local symptoms, such as pain and inflammation, and work to regain strength, flexibility and function to the shoulder. With the help of modalities, physiotherapy will reduce your symptoms and promote healing.

To learn more about how you can access and benefit from our services, please contact us today!




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