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Hydrodilatation is one of the latest techniques for treatment of frozen shoulder or adhesive capsulitis. Adhesive capsulitis or frozen shoulder is a condition characterized by the contraction and inflammation of the joint capsule surrounding the shoulder joint. This is associated with pain, stiffness and loss of range of motion in the shoulder joint. Hydrodilatation is performed to decrease the pain and improve the mobility of the shoulder joint.

Contraindications for this injection may include:

  • Diabetes
  • Any allergies, especially to contrast material or any medications
  • Blood-thinning drugs especially warfarin
  • If you are pregnant or suspect pregnancy


The skin around the shoulder is sterilized with an antiseptic solution. A fine needle is then inserted into the shoulder joint under x-ray or ultrasound guidance. A small amount of contrast medium is injected through the needle to confirm proper positioning of the needle. Once the position of the needle has been confirmed, a mixture of local anesthetic and steroid is injected into the joint through the needle. After all the fluid has been injected, the needle is removed.

Gentle movements of the shoulder can be performed, but heavy lifting and intense activity of the shoulder should be avoided for 3 days following the procedure. A follow- up appointment with the physician will be scheduled.

A small facial or neck rash can develop and last for 2 to 3 days after the procedure but this generally resolves. A few patients can develop fever.

  • Athletic Orthopedics

    Athletic Orthopedics

    Athletic Orthopedics

    Athletic Orthopedics
    & Knee Center
    9180 Katy Freeway
    Suite 200
    Houston, TX 77055





    Monday – Friday: 8:00 AM – 5:00 PM
    Saturday & Sunday: Closed

    Monday – Thursday: 7:00 AM – 7:00 PM
    Friday: 7:00 AM – 5:00 PM
    Saturday: 8:00 AM – 12:00 PM, Sunday: Closed