What is Bicep Tenodesis?

Bicep tenodesis is a surgical procedure designed to repair bicep tendon tears, treat bicep tendonitis and adjust bicep instability (a secondary condition usually caused by a rotator cuff tear). The bicep tendon itself is a component of the shoulder joint that attaches to an area of cartilage around the shoulder socket known as the labrum. This tendon can tear due to irritation or inflammation from a number of causes, such as sudden injury, traumatic accident, overuse of the area and age-related degeneration. Smoking is also a noted risk factor that dramatically increases muscle and tendon nutrition, and could increase your chances of experiencing a bicep tear.

Our Treatment Approach

If you’ve experienced sudden, sharp pain, bruising of the middle-upper arm, tenderness and weakness at the shoulder and elbow or chronic cramping of the bicep muscle, you may have torn your bicep tendon. Generally, patients will know and feel when a tear occurs – In fact, some patients even hear an audible popping or snapping sound at the moment of injury. Many patients also experience a visible deformity in the bicep muscle that appears as a distinct bulge above the elbow (sometimes referred to as “Popeye muscle”).

Upon your consultation with OrthoCARE Institute, our experienced surgeons will carefully examine your injury to determine the best course of action. Oftentimes, further diagnostic or imaging tests may be required to view the full scope of your injury, including whether it is a partial or complete tear and if any surrounding areas have been affected.

Bicep tenodesis can repair both partial and full bicep tears and can be performed using a couple of different techniques. Most bicep tenodesis procedures will follow these general guidelines:

  • Tiny incisions are created to provide the surgeon with enough room to insert a very small camera, known as an arthroscope. This allows the surgeon to clearly navigate the affected area.
  • The surgeon will then carefully suture the torn tendon and cut it from its origin, in order to trim the tendon and fit it back into the humerus bone.
  • A deep bone tunnel is created in the humerus and the tendon is inserted back into the bone with surgical screws.

Post-operative physical therapy will generally be required for a short time to ensure maximized healing. To get in touch with OrthoCARE Institute and schedule a consultation today, please call 972-573-7802 or fill out the form on our Contact Us page. We look forward to speaking with you!

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