Evaluation of the Stiff Shoulder

Stephen Weber, Prashant Meshram, Guillermo Arce, Edward McFarland

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


The stiff shoulder can have a multitude of causes. These can be divided into traumatic and atraumatic etiologies. While multiple etiologies are present, and treatment can often be complicated, the diagnosis can usually be established by means of a careful history, physical examination, and plain radiographs in two views. Additional diagnostic studies can be necessary at times, but caution is needed in their interpretation. The obstacles in demystifying the shoulder diseases are due to the nonspecific distribution of pain and difficulty in palpating anatomical landmarks. This chapter summarizes the etiology, patient history, physical examination, and diagnostic studies helpful in evaluating the stiff shoulder.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationThe Art of the Musculoskeletal Physical Exam
PublisherSpringer International Publishing
Number of pages7
ISBN (Electronic)9783031244049
ISBN (Print)9783031244032
StatePublished - Jan 1 2023


  • Adhesive capsulitis
  • Diagnosis
  • Examination
  • Fracture
  • Frozen shoulder
  • Imaging
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Stiff shoulder

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Medicine


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