The rotator cuff is a group of 4 muscles that are responsible for stability of the shoulder. Unfortunately, rotator cuff injuries are very common, either from repetitive overuse or from trauma to the shoulder. These injuries can occur at any age, but are more prevalent later in life. We often think of athletes or heavy laborers as being the most commonly affected, but older adults can injure the rotator cuff when they fall or strain their shoulder, such as when walking a dog on a leash and the dog lurches. If left untreated, this injury can cause significant pain and severely hamper your ability to use your arm.
Technically called “Adhesive Capsulitis,” this painful condition occurs in roughly 2% to 5% of the general population. Women tend to be more affected than men, and the age of onset is typically 45 years and older. For those individuals unfortunate enough to experience this debilitating condition, 20% to 30% will tend to get it in the other shoulder.
WHAT IS FROZEN SHOULDER (ADHESIVE CAPSULITIS)?
Frozen Shoulder is the stiffening of the shoulder due to scar tissue, resulting in painful movement and loss of motion. The actual cause of Frozen Shoulder is debatable. Some believe it is caused by inflammation of the lining of the joint, while others believe it is a result of autoimmune reactions, where the body launches an “attack” against its own tissues. Other possibilities include: