Severe Frozen Shoulder

Hi I've been experiencing pain in my right shoulder, arm, hand and neck for over a year now. My arm is very stiff and I can't get it behind my back. The pain is getting worse and worse and it is so hard to describe what it feels like, the doctors seem to be putting it down to severe Frozen shoulder although they say it is very rare at my age as I am only 18. Heat seems to be the only thing that helps me although I am going for a cortisone injection in my shoulder. Has this helped anyone and what else has helped?

16 Replies

  • Hi Disney 123,

    I have frozen shoulder I have had an op in August 3rd this still in agony on Morphine Patches n Meds still not Helping me I wouldn't advise an op mine is worse now than it was before I had done.

    What makes me laugh is it hurts doing normal housework hoovering ironing combing hair ect cleaning cuboards ect.

    I hope you find a solution to yours cus I haven't found one that works and physio is out of the question waiting for Pain clinic.


  • Thank you! Physio hasn't helped me either although I went for my cortisone injection today and he said that I'll have to go for more Physio soon. He is also going to see how this goes and of it doesn't work he will refer me for another imjection although this one will be under a scanner? Thinking of trying massage as this seems to have helped others.. Hope you're feeling better soon!

  • A sports physio can massage and manipulate this. And give you exercises to strengthen the muscles to prevent it happening again.

    May take a few sessions as it's been so long. Only needs one session with a new injury.

    The sessions may cause worse pain for a couple of days after, this is normal and the sports physio will explain everything, and how to deal with it.

    Sports physios understand pain and it's pathways. They are my first port of call in a flare up. Never seen a GP about my pain in 5 years because all they can do is give meds that don't work.

  • I agree with this. I had frozen shoulder or trapped nerve from pulling a suitcase around for several days whilst travelling for work. I got to my sports physio and he worked his magic and now it's fine.

  • mine was like yours and others so far answered. I had massage of almost two years once a week to start with. It is the only thing that cured it. I do mean cured. No drugs helped nor heat etc. I suggest you find a great massage lady and start treatment and yes it costs money. Chiropractors might help as well.

  • Thank you! Will definitely try massage and see how that goes!

  • Well, I have had frozen shoulders first the right and then the left almost immediately after. Very painful and dibilitating. It does take quite a long time to recover its a well known fact 2-3 years for me. I had all the usual treatments cortisone, physio etc. but the best for me was remedial massage and exercising in a warm therapy pool. It will get better remember this as it does take a long time to recover. If this is what you definitely have you do seem very young I was in my 50s.

    Take heart and be patient you will get over this

    Sheila in Oz

  • Thank you for your help! I got my cortisone injection today and he said that I would also benefit from another injection which is under a scanner in a few months if this one doesn't work.

  • Hi

    I am so sorry. Yes, I exactly what you are talking about. Being a former competative swimmer and having had had two shoulder surgeries; I can empathize on how painful this can be. Cortisone has helped me too. Along with cupping. A massge therapist usually preforms this with glass cups. Very therapeutic, hets deeper than massage and alliwing new bood into the injured area. So healing and inflammation can go down.

    Stay on top of your PT and don't give up. It will ho away :)


  • have had impingement syndrome in right shoulder for 8 years.Had surgery 3 months ago and it seemed to work.But now it has frozen so back to square one for me.nothing helped before not injections,physio or painkillers.I hope you get some help sweetie cos i know how you are feeling.try all you can as i wouldn't wish my outcome on to anyone.xx

  • Get an MRI scan. May not be frozen shoulder. Could be damaged tendon with inflammation.

    cortisone injection not advised as it can damage ligaments and tendon. If damaged tendon with inflammation 2 week course of erythromycin could relieve the problem.

    Google "erythromycin anti inflammatory effects".

    Hope this has been helpful.

  • Thank you. I asked for a scan and I was told that there wouldnt be much wear and Tear due to my age? Got the cortisone injection today? I've had X-rays and ultrasounds and nothing has showed up? Do you think that would've showed up on them??

  • x-rays cannot determine tissue problems. Do not know enough about ultrasound to comment.

    MRI shows the whole area and the relationships between the various tissues. My understanding of ultrasound is that it is very localised and so is not able to give the full picture.

    It is worth seeing a McTimony chiropractor to check for muscle spasm problems. Muscle spasms is something the medical consultants knew very little about. The complementary medicine has been dealing with the problem of muscle spasms for hundred of years. Muscle spasms will not show up on ultrasound, x-rays or MRI.

  • Ask your doctor about the risks of cortisone injections - if injected into the actual joint the risks aren't too bad, but if they are injecting into tendon, then it can contribute to tendon tears in the future, which is a much bigger problem that would require surgery.

    Also, ask if they have ruled out an inflammatory condition (inflammatory arthritis), as that can also cause that kind of problem, which is better treated by dealing with the underlying condition. You may think you are too young for arthritis, but one particular form (spondyloarthritis, which includes ankylosing spondylitis and psoriatic arthritis) always starts before the age of 30, and often well before (late teens or early 20's). Its particularly difficult to diagnose as damage visible on xrays can take up to 10 years to appear and there aren't any reliable blood screening tests, so needs a good rheumatologist to assess. If you have any kind of family history of autoimmune disease or arthritis, then I would think a rheumatology referral would be sensible.

    Aside from that, I have had exactly the problem with frozen shoulder you describe that went on for absolutely months, with less and less movement. I found a really good physiotherapist (not while I was living in the UK, unfortunately) who did very gentle mobilisations - putting heat on it first then very very careful tension on my shoulder while manipulating my arm and shoulder to free it up. After the first session I was much improved and given gentle stretching exercises to do, and after the second session didn't feel I needed to go back. It was almost a miraculous recovery. From having very frequent problems with frozen shoulder prior to that (and I do have ankylosing spondylitis with shoulder enthesitis), I've managed to keep major problems at bay ever since, just by paying a lot of attention to regular gentle stretches. I've not had much luck with NHS physios in the UK, so I think I would probably be more inclined to go to either a chiropractor or to a sports medicine clinic if I did need treatment again - even if I had to pay for it myself.

  • I had severe problems with both my shoulders. I had injection of cortisone and that helped for months. Recently had one operated on to create more space. Am probably having the other one operated on. I am still improving and definitely worth it. Take car

  • Frozen shoulders are often an indication of underactive thyroid

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