This is a case of the same diagnosis being treated two different ways and achieving the same outcome…with two very different time frames.
When I first started practice back in 2006 I had a patient come to me with a classic frozen shoulder. She was not able to get her hand over her head nor behind her back without pain and could only get it to belt level at best. At the time I had the understanding that Frozen Shoulder was the result of scar tissue. In my toolbox at the time was basically spinal manipulation and Graston Technique, a soft tissue technique designed to break up scar tissue through the use of stainless steel instruments. She was a patient who spends half the month here in Bellingham and the other half of the month in another state so treatments were broken up accordingly. We made progress and over approximately 6 months she was back to full range of motion and continues to be free of any frozen shoulder symptoms in her right shoulder.
Some years past and I did not see this patient until earlier this year when she came in with the complaint of another frozen shoulder. This time the left one. She came in to undergo more Graston treatments because it worked out on the right one. I had to inform her I had sold my Graston instruments a couple years back because I had found more effective techniques to get the desired result for soft tissue issues. They were literally collecting dust.
As I have evolved as a chiropractor my new understanding of Frozen Shoulder evolved. I now recognize it as nervous system issue. This time we had her Frozen Shoulder back to full range of motion in just a few treatments. We accomplished without any soft tissue work whatsoever. What was done? I adjusted her spine in particular her cervical (neck) spine. I found where the interference was occurring and did a specific adjustment to that area. In an instant after the adjustment, she gained more range of motion. Significantly. No pain administered through Graston or other soft tissue techniques just a better functioning nervous system through the adjustment got it going. Every time she comes in now…the arm goes overhead and she states, “it’s just amazing.”
This, of course, is not the only case we have resolved in this manner. We have seen this resolve consistently in a dozen patients at this point. Also, you can check out the movie Doctored…a doc in that movie has an insane number of Frozen Shoulder cases gain full or close to full range of motion in a single upper cervical adjustment. Clearly, this is not a scar tissue issue.
If you are suffering from a Frozen Shoulder give us a call 360.526.8531. Chances are we can get it moving without you having to go through the usual painful methods typically employed.