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Biceps Tendonitis

Biceps tendonitis is the inflammation of the biceps tendon, the tissue that connects muscle to bone in your upper arm. It causes pain in the upper arm and shoulder. It is more common in men in the age group of 40 to 60 years, and occurs during many sports activities such as tennis, baseball, weightlifting and kayaking, where overhead movement is involved.

Two separate tendons or heads in the upper arm, the long head and short head, converge to form a single muscle called the biceps muscle. It helps in the bending of the hand at the elbow. The long head passes through the shoulder joint and into the bicipital groove, which is a depression in the arm bone. When the tendon get inflamed due to stress or injury, as seen in bicipital tendinitis, it rubs against the joint or groove, causing pain.

The common causes of bicipital tendonitis include overuse of the arm and shoulder, especially in sports, inflammatory diseases like bursitis or arthritis, injury or infection.

Bicipital tendinitis is characterized by pain in the shoulder, which may travel to the forearm, tenderness at the region where the biceps contacts the shoulder, reduced shoulder movement, and a bulge in the biceps if a tendon ruptures.

On presenting with shoulder pain, your doctor will conduct a thorough examination of your shoulder to identify the site of inflammation and the movements that cause pain. X-rays and MRI scan may be suggested to confirm on the diagnosis.

First line treatment options include rest, ice, compression and elevation (R.I.C.E.) and Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) to bring down the inflammation and pain. Your arm may be placed in a sling for comfort. Alternatively, an anesthetic and steroid is injected in your shoulder.

If conservative treatment does not provide relief, surgery is performed. Through surgery, the inflamed tissue can be removed (biceps debridement), the long head of the tendon can be cut so that it does not rub against the joint and groove (biceps tenotomy), or the tendon can be cut and reattached lower down the arm (biceps tenodesis).

Bicipital tendonitis can be prevented by modifying overhead hand activities with guidance from a physiotherapist.

Advanced Orthopedics
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Houston Shoulder Specialists

Advanced Orthopedics and sports medicine has numerous Board Certified/Eligible physicians who are thoroughly educated in the latest treatment techniques both surgical and conservative. They are well versed in advances in shoulder treatments including arthroscopic rotator cuff and Bankart repairs, shoulder stabilization procedures, total shoulder replacement and reverse shoulder replacement.

Drs Elbaz and Brooks now perform Platelet-Rich Plasma (PRP) injections for the treatment of rotator cuff tendinitis, and biciptal tendonitis. PRP stimulates a more rapid healing of tendon, ligament, muscle and bone.

Contact us today to Schedule an Appointment or call us at 281-955-2650 to learn more about our Shoulder Treatment options.

Our Locations
  • 1Professional Building II At North Cypress Medical Center
  • 2North Cypress Professional Building At Lakewood Crossing
  • 3North Cypress Professional Building At Towne Lake
  • 4Advanced Orthopaedics Memorial

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