What Is Biceps Tendonitis (aka Bicep Tendonitis)? Tendons are connective tissue bands that attach muscles to bones. The biceps muscle is located in the front part of the upper arm and attaches at the elbow and in two places at the shoulder. Biceps tendonitis, is inflammation that causes pain in the front part of the shoulders or upper arm
How Does It Occur? Biceps tendonitis occurs from overuse of the arm and shoulder or from an injury to the biceps tendon.
What Are The Symptoms Of Biceps Tendonitis? You feel pain when you move your arm and shoulder, especially when you move your arm forward over shoulder height. You feel pain when you touch the front of your shoulder.
How Is It Diagnosed? A doctor can examine your arm and shoulder for tenderness along the biceps muscle and biceps tendons and suggest an appropriate course of treatment.
How Is It Treated? Treatment for biceps tendonitis may include:
- 1. Placing ice packs on your shoulder for 20 to 30 minutes every 3 to 4 hours for 2 or 3 days or until the pain goes away.
- 2. Taking anti-inflammatory medication.
- 3. Getting an injection of a corticosteriod medication to reduce the inflammation and pain.
- 4. Doing rehabilitation exercises.
When Can I Return To My Sport Or Activity? The goal of rehabilitation is to return you to your sport or activity as soon as is safely possible. If you return too soon you may worsen your injury, which could lead to permanent damage. Everyone recovers from injury at a different rate. Return to your activity will be determined by how soon your shoulder recovers, not by how many days or weeks it has been since your injury occurred. In general, the longer you have symptoms before you start treatment, the longer it will take to get better. You may safely return to your sport or activity when:
- 1. Your injured shoulder has full range of motion without pain.
- 2. Your injured shoulder has regained normal strength compared to the uninjured shoulder. In throwing sports, you must gradually rebuild your tolerance to throwing. This means you should start with gentle tossing and gradually throw harder. In contact sports, your shoulder must not be tender to touch and contact should progress from minimal contact to harder contact.
Biceps Tendonitis Exercises:
- Active range of motion A) Flexion: Gently try to bend your elbow, bringing your hand toward your shoulder, palm up. Hold for 5 seconds. Repeat 10 times. Do 3 sets. B) Extension: Gently relax your arm out straight. Hold 5 seconds. Repeat 10 times. Do 3 sets. C) Pronation and supination: With your elbow bent at a 90-degree angle, move your forearm so your palm faces up and then faces down. Hold each position for 5 seconds. Repeat palm up and palm down 10 times each. Do 3 sets.
- Biceps strengthening: Begin by holding a soup can or similar object in your hand. Bend your elbow by bringing your hand toward your shoulder. Hold 5 seconds. Repeat 10 times. Do 3 sets.
- Pronation and supination strengthening: Hold a hammer in your hand. With your elbow bent at a 90-degree angle, move your forearm so your palm faces up and then faces down. Hold each position 10 seconds. Repeat palm up and palm down 10 times each. Do 3 sets.
- Triceps strengthening: Lie on your back with your injured arm pointing toward the ceiling. Hold a light weight in your hand. Bend your elbow completely, so that your hand is resting on the same shoulder and your elbow is pointing toward the ceiling. Straighten the elbow completely so that your hand is pointing toward the ceiling. Return to the starting position. Repeat 10 times. Do 3 sets. Increase the amount of weight when this becomes too easy.
- Shoulder flexion strengthening: Stand with your injured arm hanging down at your side. Keeping your elbow straight, bring your arm forward and up toward the ceiling. Hold this position for 5 seconds. Repeat 10 times. Do three sets. When this becomes too easy, hold a weight.
All material provided is designed for information purposes only and should not be used to replace the care of a health care professional. Do not rely on any of the information for diagnosis or treatment. It is recommended that you visit a qualified health care professional for individual and personal attention.