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Biceps Brachii Tendinopathy

Posted on 17th Oct 2016 / Published in: Elbow , Shoulder

Biceps brachii tendinopathy refers to an inflammation in the tendon connecting the biceps muscle found on the front of the upper arm to that of the shoulder blade. The main function of the biceps is to bend your arm, and to rotate your arm. The tendon of the Biceps passes through the narrow groove of the arm bone and the tendon rubs against edges of that of the bony groove, which can cause inflammation and micro tears. 

Biceps Brachii Tendinopathy Anatomy

Biceps tendinopathy is described as tenderness and pain within the biceps region. The junction is often susceptible to injuries from overuse, especially in those who perform a lot of lifting activities on a repeat basis. The condition is often improperly diagnosed and confused with tendinopathy of the rotator cuff. Most of the time, this condition coexists with shoulder instability, tears of the rotator cuff and imbalances in the dynamic stabilizers. 95 percent of patients with this condition have impingement syndrome.

Biceps Brachii Tendinopathy

How to Treat Biceps Brachii Tendinopathy:

  1. Bringing Ice into the Mix

By icing the shoulder, you can help to reduce tendon inflammation. Apply an ice pack to the area for 5 to 20 minutes every three or four hours. Continue the icing for up to 2 weeks or until the symptoms are alleviated.

  1. Anti-Inflammatory Medications

Anti-inflammatory medications work to decrease the tendon inflammation and provide you with a certain degree of pain relief. Naproxen and ibuprofen are two of the common medications that work for treating this condition.

  1. Corticosteroid Injections

These injections provide a local anti-inflammatory straight to the inflamed area. Physicians can inject the sheath to help decrease any inflammation in your tendon. The doctor will try to make sure the injection goes directly into the tendon and not into the surrounding areas.

  1. Physical Therapy

Physical therapy works wonders for those who are suffering with this condition. Patients will undergo strengthening and stretching exercises, as well as acupuncture, massage, ultrasound and electric stimulation. 


  1. Before returning to activity, you will want to make sure you have complete range of movement in the shoulder and full strength. Jumping in too soon can cause more problems than what it will be worth in the end.
  2. Avoid participating in any activities that cause pain. Also be cautious with weight training as this is a common cause of the problem. Bicep curling with a dumbbell or bar is a common cause of this condition.
  3. Don’t raise your arm above your head as that will only cause more problems in the joint. Beyond tenderness, you may also find a clicking sound whenever the arm is raised above the head.
  4. To prevent the condition, you need to stretch the tendons regularly so follow the exercises prescribed by your therapist.
  5. Make sure to regularly change your positions when exercising at work to minimize pain and potential overuse.

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