Scientists have developed a new nonsurgical treatment that decreases erranta blood flow in the shoulder to quickly reduce pain and improve function in patients with adhesive capsulitis, also known as "frozen shoulder," as per a recent research abstract.
The research abstract was presented during a virtual session of the Society of Interventional Radiology's 2020 Annual Scientific Meeting.
Frozen shoulder gradually causes significant pain and stiffness of the shoulder joint in an estimated 200,000 people in the U.S. each year.
The symptoms are often treated with physical therapy or pain medications until they resolve within one to three years.The research was conducted as a collaboration between interventional radiology and orthopaedic surgery to build on international studies of the procedure by adapting the treatment design and embolic agent to be more durable.
The team plans to expand the study to additional patients in 2020.
FDA-approved Investigational Device Exemption clinical trial on arterial embolization of the shoulder (AES), interventional radiologists inserted a catheter through a pinhole-sized incision in patients' wrists that was used to feed microsphere particles into as many as six arteries in the shoulder to reduce inflammation.
The treatment was conducted on an outpatient basis and took approximately one hour.
Each patient's pain, disability, and blood flow in the shoulder were measured before and after the treatment using three scales, in addition to MRI imaging to visualize the shoulder joint.The treatment was successfully completed in 16 patients whose symptoms had not responded to conservative treatment over 30 days.
The authors note that this treatment is still investigational and that conservative therapies should still be considered first.
Additionally, there are several important limitations of the research, including small sample size and lack of control arm.