Shoulder Surgery: Biceps Tendon Surgery

Shoulder Surgery: Biceps Tendon Surgery, TPL Orthopedics and Sports MedicineThe biceps tendon attaches the biceps muscle to the bone. It involves two tendon attachments in the shoulder. Therefore, the term “biceps” pertains to “bi”-ceps referring to these attachments. In addition, there is a tendon attachment of the muscle beneath the elbow.

The biceps muscle is vital to both turning the forearm upward (supination) and bending the elbow (flexion). Biceps tendon tears can reduce the strength in these motions as well as cause a deformity of the biceps muscle.

Thomas and Bigler Knee and Shoulder Institute, led by dependable board certified orthopedic surgeons Dr. Steven C. Thomas and Dr. Gregory T. Bigler, provides orthopedic treatments to patients in Las Vegas, Nevada, and surrounding communities in The Silver State.


Biceps Tendon Tears

Shoulder pain commonly occurs due to biceps tendon tears in the shoulder. Biceps are typically believed to be a significant cause of pain in the shoulder. Biceps tears are usually related to rotator cuff problems.

To completely relieve shoulder pain, the biceps tendon issue may need to be treated. Biceps tendon problems can be addressed in various ways, surgical as well as nonsurgical. One surgical treatment to address biceps tendon tears is known as biceps tenodesis.


Biceps Tenodesis

Biceps tenodesis is a surgery that aims to treat the damaged proximal long head of biceps tendon. This surgical procedure may be performed by itself or more frequently, as a part of a more extensive shoulder surgery such as a rotator cuff repair.

In this procedure, the surgeon will detach the normal attachment of the biceps tendon in the shoulder joint (if it is not fully torn already). After that, they will reinsert the tendon into the arm bone (bone of humerus). In case of a full rupture of the biceps tendon, the detachment of the tendon is obviously not required.

Biceps tenodesis involves the careful moving of the tendon from its normal position inside the shoulder joint to a new area further down the bone of humerus.

The attachment of the biceps tendon is moved, and it is no longer attached to the shoulder joint. This minimizes problems in the future as the compromised biceps tendon can create issues within the joint.


Biceps Tenodesis Candidates

This surgery can be used for the treatment of the following conditions:

  • SLAP tears
  • rupture of the long head of the biceps
  • biceps tendinosis
  • biceps tendonitis


Alternative Treatments

There is a strong debate on the ideal treatment for biceps tendon issues in the shoulder. In general, the most suitable treatment of a biceps tendon problem depends on the patient’s age and activities and type of tendon injury among other factors. Other types of biceps tendon surgeries include:

  • biceps tenotomy
  • SLAP repair


Tenotomy or Tenodesis?

There are benefits and limitations associated with both these procedures. Both are reasonable treatment options. While one may be more appropriate for some patients, the other may be suitable to others. Neither option is better or worse.

More active patients such as athletes or manual laborers choose biceps tenodesis, or if the patient has concerns on the appearance of their biceps muscle. Patients who seek faster recovery and want to avoid the complications of tendon repair and a longer procedure typically undergo biceps tenotomy.

Caring board certified orthopedic surgeons Dr. Thomas and Dr. Bigler receive patients from Las Vegas, Nevada and other towns and suburbs in the southeast part of Nevada for orthopedic treatments.  

Board certified orthopedic surgeons
at the Thomas & Bigler Knee & Shoulder Institute receive patients from Las Vegas, Nevada, and nearby areas for knee and shoulder treatments.If you would like to schedule an appointment or learn more about the Knee and Shoulder Institute procedures & treatments performed by Las Vegas, Nevada board-certified surgeons Steven C. Thomas, MD and Gregory T. Bigler, MD. Contact the office today click here.

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