‘Frozen Shoulder’ is the common name of adhesive capsulitis, a condition that causes pain and stiffness in the shoulder. As its name speaks for itself, patients with frozen shoulder experience a limited range of shoulder movement. It most commonly affects middle-aged people. People with recent shoulder injuries are also at risk for developing frozen shoulder. According to TCM, long term exposure of shoulder joints to cold and/or wet weather increases the chance of suffering from frozen shoulder. Invasion of coldness and dampness causes blockage of meridian, Qi and blood circulation is hence hindered.
Although frozen shoulder generally gets better over time, it could take up to 3 years. The focus of acupuncture and cupping treatment is to relive the pain and to restore normal strength and motion. Massaging JIANYU (LI-15) and JIANLIAO (TB-14), two frequently used acupoints, may help to resolve the shoulder pain. Stretching exercises are recommended for recovery. Lack of use of shoulder joint will cause the shoulder capsule to thicken and become tight, which will further reduce its flexibility.