A pilot study using acupuncture in the treatment of 31 patients with frozen shoulder showed marked improvement in 24 and improvement in 6. Patients with idiopathic or arthritic frozen shoulder responded better than those with post-traumatic aetiology. There was no relationship between response to acupuncture and age.
Although this study involved no control group, the high level of improvement together with the author’s clinical experience suggests that acupuncture should be considered an effective option in the treatment of frozen shoulder; the more so since conventional medical therapy has a low expectation of benefit. Aetiology pathology and clinical management are described in both Western medical and traditional Chinese terms and details of acupuncture treatment methods are given.
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