Biceps Surgery


Biceps Tendon Degenerative Conditions

The long head of biceps is a small tendon which passes up from the biceps muscle in the arm, crosses the shoulder joint and attaches to the top of the shoulder joint socket. It passes through a small groove in the top of the humerus bone. In this area it is susceptible to injury leading to fraying and damage. It is not always possible to accurately view damage to this small structure using ultrsound or MRI scans. Often damage is only first identified during key-hole surgery when the tendon can be clearly seen. The surgical options for a badly damaged biceps tendon include releasing the tendon (tenotomy) or in addition to releasing it also reattaching it to the humerus bone (tenodesis). You may wish to discuss the options with Mr Hughes during your consultations. Recovery is normally straightforward, the advantages of a tenotomy are that the sling can be removed after only 48 hours and rehabilitation progresses immediately with full active movements under the supervision of our physiotherapists. Recovery progresses with return to full activities usually by 6 weeks.

SLAP Lesions

SLAP lesions occur when the attachment of the biceps tendon to the top of the socket is torn. The end of the biceps tendon can then trap sometimes trap in the joint leading to pain and poor function. It is possible to repair SLAP tears by key-hole surgery where the tear is repaired back to bone with strong stitches. Following this a sling is worn for 3 weeks to allow the repair to heal. following this a careful regime of exercises is commenced under the care of our physiotherapists. Recovery occurs gradually with return to work usually  taking 10 weeks. It can often take 6 months before the patient is able to return to their chosen sport and this is particularly the case in contact sports such as rugby.


© Peter James Hughes 2015