by Saif Usman MD

Home exercise plans are an integral part of rehabilitation and treatment of musculoskeletal injuries. However, it can be hard for patients to understand directions or remember what the doctor showed them at their clinic visits. This is where an app demonstrating the exercises can be very useful. This is what the developers were going for when they developed the frozen shoulder app for treating adhesive capsulitis aka frozen shoulder.

Clinical scenario

68 year old male presents with right shoulder pain and limited range of motion and is diagnosed with a frozen shoulder.

User interface

The app is extremely basic and offers nothing in the way of directions, although they may not be needed. The app opens to the first exercise which is the ‘pulley’. It shows a picture of the starting and ending position of the exercise. In the upper middle of the screen is a timer and repetition counter and at the bottom are start and stop buttons.

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Tapping the start button starts a timer for the first repetition. If I understood it correctly, tap stop when the first rep is completed then tap start again for the second rep, then stop and start for the third rep, and so on.

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Not only is it unclear if this is the only way to use the app but it’s also tedious and requires interruption of the exercises.

The app contains 5 exercises which are listed in a toolbar at the bottom of every screen and they all have an image with the start and stop buttons.

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Evidence and literature used to support the app

None listed

Healthcare providers that would benefit from this app

None

Patients that would benefit from this app

Patients with frozen shoulder doing home exercises.

  • Price
    • $9.99 on iOS
    • Easy to navigate
  • Dislikes
    • No directions/explanations for the app
    • No videos, only black and white images
    • No references
    • Not available for Android
  • Overall

    I would have hoped for some videos showing the exercises and some explanation of how to use the app. At the very least the images could have been in color. No references are listed for the exercises shown and at best this app should be free and is definitely not worth the price.  We do not feel healthcare providers should recommend this app to their patients, and patients should avoid using it.

  • Overall Score
  • User Interface
  • Multimedia Usage
  • Price
  • Real World Applicability
  • Device Used For Review

    iPad mini with retina display

  • Available for DownloadiPhoneiPad