Biceps Tenotomy Overview

Patients in the greater Long Island, Brooklyn, Queens & NYC area suffering from shoulder pain and tenderness may be diagnosed with biceps tendonitis. Located between the shoulder joint and the elbow joint, the biceps tendon is responsible for elbow flexion and forearm rotation. Swimmers, basketball players and other athletes are at an elevated risk of developing this shoulder condition because of repetitive shoulder movements. Biceps tendonitis is commonly treated with non-surgical measures, but certain patients may require a surgical intervention. Dr. Jonathan Ticker, orthopedic surgeon and shoulder specialist, is highly trained and experienced in the arthroscopic biceps tenodesis procedure. The surgical procedure is designed to release the damaged tendon, known as a tenotomy, and reattach it to a new attachment site to alleviate shoulder discomfort.

The short head of the biceps and the long head of the biceps are the two muscle “bellies” that compose the biceps tendon. The long head of the biceps enters the shoulder and attaches to the top portion of the socket (glenoid). The long head is the most commonly injured, mainly because of its location at the front of the joint. The tendon must slide back and forth through a tiny groove during arm and shoulder movements. With continuous, repetitive movement through the groove during athletic activities, the tendon may become irritated and inflamed, often leading to a partial or complete tendon tear.

Dr. Ticker may recommend an arthroscopic biceps tenodesis in patients where non-surgical measures fail to alleviate tenderness and pain at the front of the shoulder joint. During the minimally invasive approach near the armpit, he will release the damaged tendon from its original attachment site at the top of the glenoid and reattach it to the humerus (upper arm bone). The actual release of the tendon is known as a tenotomy. The tendon’s new attachment site at the humerus allows it to be located away from the shoulder, allowing patients to return to athletic activities with no pain or discomfort.

Dr. Ticker may also recommend a procedure called a subpectoral biceps tenodesis. This arthroscopic technique requires him to release the tendon (tenotomy) and reattach it to the bone located near the inferior portion of the pectoralis muscle. This procedure often preserves the length and tension of the biceps tendon, and is quite effective at treating cases of a failed biceps tenodesis.

Arthroscopic Biceps Tenodesis Recovery and Rehabilitation

Following an arthroscopic biceps tenodesis procedure, Dr. Ticker will prescribe a detailed physical therapy program designed to restore joint mobility and strength. In many cases, range of motion exercises begin shortly after the procedure.

Arthroscopic Biceps Tenodesis Recovery Time

Many patients can expect a full recovery at approximately three months if the rehabilitation and physical therapy guidelines are strictly followed. Patients may require additional recovery time in cases of a subpectoral biceps tenodesis to correct a failed initial surgery.

For more resources on arthroscopic biceps tenodesis, or to learn more about the benefits of releasing the biceps tendon (tenotomy) to alleviate biceps tendonitis, please contact the Long Island, Brooklyn, Queens & NYC orthopedic office of Dr. Jonathan Ticker.