Frozen Shoulder: Symptom and Causes


Pain and persistent stiffness in the shoulder joint are the two main symptoms of a frozen shoulder. Symptoms of frozen shoulder develop gradually; usually in three stages.
There are three stages of frozen shoulder:
  • Painful stage- the shoulder becomes stiff and then very painful with movement. Movement becomes limited. Pain typically worsens at night.
  • Frozen/adhesive stage- the shoulder becomes increasingly stiff, severely limiting range of motion. Pain may not diminish, but it does not usually worsen.
  • Thawing stage- movement in the shoulder begins to improve. Pain may fade, but occasionally recur.


Most of the time there is no cause for frozen shoulder. Risk factors include:
  • Cervical disc disease of the neck
  • Chronic illness like diabetes or arthritis
  • Women in post-menopausal age
  • Shoulder injury
  • Shoulder surgery
  • Open heart surgery
  • Thyroid problems

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