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Bicep Tendonitis

Bicep Tendonitis, AKA Bicipital Tendonitis is defined as inflammation of the long head of the biceps tendon. The bicep tendon runs through the bicipital groove of the humerus bone and under the transverse humeral ligament, leading to the tendon being more prone to irritation during movement.

Common complaints can include:

  • A deep ache in front and/or on top of the shoulder

  • Pain down into the muscle belly of the bicep

  • Weakness during flexion or supination of the forearm

  • Catching/clicking/popping sensation in the upper arm

Causes of bicep tendonitis can either be traumatic or non-traumatic. Some traumatic causes can include falling on the shoulder, falling onto an outstretched hand (FOOSH), or sudden overloading of the bicep tendon. Non-traumatic causes can include continuous or repetitive motion of the shoulder leading to micro trauma to the bicep tendon. Over time the tendon fibers can become frayed and break which can lead to the tendon becoming inflamed. Repetitive damage causes scar tissue which thickens the tendon, leading to irritation as it passes under the transverse humeral ligament.

Risk Factors

  • Repetitive overhead activity during work, sport, or daily life

  • Tendons become more stiff as we age and more prone to injury

  • Arthritis, which can cause bone spurs which could encroach upon the bicep tendon

Stretching and strengthening exercises, manual manipulation, and soft tissue modalities are some of the techniques that can be used to help relieve the symptoms that you are experiencing.

As always, the quickest way to get on your path of healing is to get a concrete diagnosis and focused treatment plan. At Dauntless Sport & Spine Clinic we make sure all of our patients have a treatment and rehab plan that's specifically tailored to their case and goals. Contact us today to learn more!

Until next time,

Dr. Sierra Hanowski

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