What Causes Frozen Shoulder?


If you are older than 40 years and experiencing shoulder stiffness or pain during shoulder movements, it could be a case of frozen shoulder.  Clinically known as adhesive capsulitis, this shoulder condition occurs when the shoulder capsule thickens or becomes swollen, causing difficulty in usual shoulder movements.

Pain during shoulder movement is the first sign of frozen shoulder. Other common symptoms include a feeling of tightness in the shoulder area and pain on the backend of the wrist. Physiotherapy treatment can help cure frozen shoulder, although doctors cannot always identify the cause behind this condition.

However, most cases of frozen shoulder develop due to a long period of shoulder inactivity. Here are some common factors responsible for frozen shoulder.

Injury or surgery

After a serious injury or after undergoing a surgery on your arm or shoulder, you may have to immobilize the shoulder area for a few weeks or months. This can result in frozen shoulder due to a long period of inactivity.


Diabetes patients are twice more likely to develop a frozen shoulder, according to recent studies. The reason for this is not known, but medical experts say that diabetes can greatly increase the risk of getting this condition in both shoulders. If you have diabetes, you should seek medical advice regularly and make sure that the condition is under control.


Women are more susceptible than men to suffer this condition. Also, people ages between 40 and 70 are more likely to have a frozen shoulder, says recent studies.

Medical history

Apart from diabetes, several other medical conditions can increase your risk of getting a frozen shoulder. For instance, patients with a history of heart diseases, breast cancer, thyroid problems, tuberculosis, Parkinson's disease and lung diseases are at a greater risk of developing this condition. You may also suffer this condition along with other shoulder conditions, such as, rotator cuff tear and calcific tendonitis.