Suprascapular nerve block for pain relief in adhesive capsulitis: comparison of 2 different techniques

Arch Phys Med Rehabil. 2002 May;83(5):593-7. doi: 10.1053/apmr.2002.32472.


Objective: To evaluate the clinical effectiveness of 2 suprascapular nerve block techniques in adhesive capsulitis.

Design: A single-blinded, randomized, comparative clinical trial.

Setting: Physical medicine and rehabilitation department of a university hospital in Turkey.

Participants: Forty-one patients with adhesive capsulitis.

Interventions: Suprascapular nerve block with patients randomly divided into 2 groups: group A, needle tip guided by superficial bony landmarks, or group B, near-nerve electromyographically guided technique.

Main outcome measures: Visual analog scale (VAS) score for pain severity and range of motion (ROM) were assessed before the injection and at 10 and 60 minutes after it.

Results: Active and passive ROM changes and VAS score changes from baseline were statistically significant for each group (P<.05). Passive ROM changes within time after the injection were statistically significant between the 2 groups in all planes except glenohumeral abduction. Achieved VAS score changes in the groups within time were significantly different from each other (P=.001). The VAS score difference after the suprascapular nerve block was more prominent in the near-nerve electromyography group.

Conclusion: The near-nerve electromyography technique for suprascapular nerve block was more successful in providing and maintaining pain relief for up to 60 minutes.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Comparative Study
  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Bursitis / complications*
  • Bursitis / physiopathology
  • Bursitis / therapy*
  • Electromyography
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Nerve Block*
  • Pain / etiology*
  • Pain / physiopathology
  • Pain Management*
  • Pain Measurement
  • Range of Motion, Articular / physiology
  • Recovery of Function / physiology
  • Scapula / innervation*
  • Scapula / physiopathology
  • Severity of Illness Index
  • Time Factors