In a recent study by Dr. Lee et al, 15 patients with chronic adhesive capsulitis were treated with an intra-articular PRP injection and followed for 6 months after the injection. At the 6-month follow up the patients that had received the PRP injection had a significant improvement in pain and range of motion compared to a matched control group that only received a steroid injection.
Conclusion: PRP demonstrated a significant improvement in pain and function in patients with a frozen shoulder compared to steroid injections.
Adhesive capsulitis or frozen shoulder is common and can limit shoulder motion. Contractures or scar tissue forms around the joint capsule. The cause is still unknown. However, frozen shoulder is often associated with shoulder surgery, trauma or metabolic disease such as diabetes. Learn more about frozen shoulder here.
Current treatment options include physical therapy, medications, steroid injections and surgical release. Among these steroid injections are the most common treatment in clinical practice, although the effect is not long lasting and has been associated with adverse events to the tendon and bone.
In many cases, adhesive capsulitis resolves on its own. In other people conservative treatments don’t work and patients consider surgery (manipulation under anesthesia or shoulder arthroscopic surgery).
PRP is a natural reservoir of cytokines and growth factors, and has been shown to inhibit the release of proinflammatory molecules in joints.
Other larger randomized controlled studies have found similar results.
If you have not responded to traditional treatments for adhesive capsulitis PRP maybe an option. If you are considering surgery, schedule a consultation with Dr. Sussman to discuss alternatives to surgery:
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