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  • Jet Li

Acupuncture for Frozen Shoulder

Frozen shoulder is experienced with pain, feeling of coldness on the shoulder and limited shoulder movement. It often happens to people of 50+ years old. Female is more prone to the disease than male. From the western medicinal point of view, the disease can be attributed to soft tissue deterioration, inflammation, overuse of shoulder and trauma. In Chinese medicine, frozen shoulder, besides physical damage, can also be caused by wind and cold temperature which obstruct the circulation of Chi and Blood in the shoulder area. At the beginning phase of the disease, pain is often the dominant symptom. The pain is worse at sleep and becomes better with movements in the day. In the later phase, pain will become less but movement will be limited due to tissue adhesion. The limited movement may eventually lead to atrophy of the muscle if left untreated. Few people may recover on their own.

Acupuncture is proven very effective for frozen shoulder. I will not only use acupuncture, but also cupping and Tui Na, which are also treatment modalities within the scope of Chinese Medicine Practice. The combined and individualized treatments make the result more powerful and prominent. The responses to treatment vary among individuals. Depending on the severity and stage of the disease, 1 to 3 treatments may be needed to see improvement. Patients are recommended to come 1 to 2 times a week with 5 times as one course of treatment. Most patients experience improved range of motion the next day after treatment if not right away. Frozen shoulder can be fully recovered. There is a 60% total recovering rate and a 95% total effective rate. The earlier the treatment, the better the result.

Case 1: female, injured the shoulder for 7 months, had been seeing massage therapist for 3 to 4 months and reached a healing plateau. Come to me for acupuncture for a total of ten, ranges of motion is completely restored.

Case 2: female, radiating shoulder pain (extreme) for 4 years due to labor work, felt beaten up by somebody when waking up in the morning and limited range of motion. She went for acupuncture and Tui Na elsewhere once a week for 6 months without result. She was refered to me by another client. In 2 treatments she started to feel different and in about 10 treatments the pain is almost gone. I also showed her some exercises for maintenance. In 8 months, she took her mom to see me and told me the pain was very little and she could drive by herself for 3 hours from up island, which she could never do before.

Case 3: female, shoulder pain due to violin playing for more than 20 years, lately had a fall and injury her rib. As a result, could not raise the shoulder but she was scheduled to play in 3 days. She was referred by her daughter who came to me for similar issue. In one treatment, the rib pain was gone and was able to raise the shoulder. Happy ending ^^

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