The bones, ligaments and tendons that make up your shoulder joint are encased in a capsule of connective tissue. Frozen shoulder occurs when this capsule thickens and tightens around the shoulder joint, restricting its movement.
Doctors aren't sure why this happens to some people and not to others, although it's more likely to occur in people who have recently experienced prolonged immobilization of their shoulder, such as after surgery or an arm fracture.
Apr. 28, 2011
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- Frozen shoulder. American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons. http://orthoinfo.aaos.org/topic.cfm?topic=a00071. Accessed Feb. 4, 2011.
- Anderson BC. Frozen shoulder. http://www.uptodate.com/home/index.html. Accessed Feb. 4, 2011.
- Krabik BJ, et al. Adhesive capsulitis. In: Frontera WR, et al. Essentials of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation: Musculoskeletal Disorders, Pain, and Rehabilitation. 2nd ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Saunders Elsevier; 2008. http://www.mdconsult.com/das/book/body/208746819-6/0/1678/0.html. Accessed Feb. 4, 2011.
- Acupuncture: An introduction. National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine. http://nccam.nih.gov/health/acupuncture/introduction.htm. Accessed Feb. 10, 2011.
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