What is the role of imaging studies in the diagnosis of frozen shoulder syndrome (FSS) (adhesive capsulitis)?

Updated: Nov 12, 2020
  • Author: Jefferson R Roberts, MD; Chief Editor: S Ashfaq Hasan, MD  more...
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Answer

Imaging studies are not indicated in the diagnosis of FSS. No imaging modality has been definitively shown to provide greater diagnostic value, due to the heterogeneity of techniques used, and the presence of potential confounding factors limits definitive conclusions from imaging study findings. However, more recent studies are moving toward defining the criteria for imaging studies to aid in the staging of FSS. Common findings in FSS are thickening of the coracohumeral and inferior glenohumeral ligaments. Zappia reports that rotator interval fat pad obliteration has 100% specificity for adhesive capsulitis. [42]


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