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Long Head Biceps Tendon Rupture

Dr.Okoroha

Long Head Biceps Tendon Rupture Specialist

Elderly people, individuals involved in repetitive overhead activities or those participating in weightlifting have an increased risk of rupture of the long head of the biceps tendon due to overuse and injury to the biceps muscle. Biceps tendon rupture specialist, Dr. Kelechi Okoroha provides diagnosis and individualized non-surgical and surgical management for long head biceps tendon ruptures in Detroit. Contact Dr. Okoroha’s team for an appointment today!

What is the Long Head of the Biceps Tendon?

Your biceps muscle has two heads, a long head, and a short head, which are both attached to the shoulder. The long head of the biceps tendon is a tough band of connective fibrous tissue that attaches the long head of the biceps to the top of the shoulder socket.

Causes of Long Head Biceps Tendon Rupture

Overuse and injury of the biceps muscle during weightlifting or any repetitive physical activity causes fraying and eventual long head biceps tendon rupture. It can also occur due to falling on an outstretched arm.

When a biceps tendon rupture is suspected, it is important to schedule an orthopedic consultation for proper examination and care. Dr. Kelechi Okoroha is a shoulder specialist who provides detailed examination and care for patients with long head biceps tendon rupture in Detroit, Royal Oak, Sterling Heights, Bloomfield Hills, Dearborn, Michigan and beyond.

Risks Factors for Long Head Biceps Tendon Rupture

The risk factors for long head biceps tendon rupture include:

  • Old age
  • Repetitive overhead activities
  • Smoking
  • Corticosteroid medication use

Types of Long Head Biceps Tendon Rupture

Tears of the long head of the biceps tendon may be either:

  • Partial tears
  • Complete tears

Symptoms of Long Head Biceps Tendon Rupture

The symptoms that may occur with the tendon rupture include:

  • A popping sound
  • A snapping sensation
  • Pain with overhead activity
  • Weakness in the shoulder
  • Bruising in the upper arm

Diagnosis of Long Head Biceps Tendon Rupture

Dr. Okoroha diagnoses a biceps tendon rupture after observing your symptoms and reviewing your medical history. A physical exam is performed where your arm may be moved in different positions in order to see which movements elicit pain or weakness. Dr. Okoroha may order imaging studies such as X-rays to assess for bone deformities such as bone spurs, which may have caused the tear, or an MRI scan to determine if the tear is partial or complete.

Treatment of Long Head Biceps Tendon Rupture

After careful review of your history and examination, Dr. Okoroha will provide an individualized treatment plan to help you return to your normal function.

Nonsurgical treatment includes:

Rest: A sling is used to rest the shoulder and you are advised to avoid overhead activities and heavy lifting until healed.

Ice: Applying ice packs for 20 minutes at a time, 3 to 4 times a day, helps reduce swelling.
Medications: Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medicines help reduce pain and swelling.

Physical therapy: Strengthening and flexibility exercises help restore strength and mobility to the shoulder joint.

Surgery may be necessary if your symptoms are not relieved by conservative measures and if you are an athlete and require full restoration of strength. Dr. Okoroha makes an incision near your shoulder where the tendon is torn. The torn end of the tendon is cleaned, and the bone is prepared by creating drill holes. Sutures are woven through the holes, and the tendon to secure it back to the bone and hold it in place. The incision is then closed and a dressing applied.

If you have experienced a long head biceps tendon rupture, please contact Dr. Kelechi Okoroha, orthopedic shoulder specialist treating patients in Detroit, Royal Oak, Sterling Heights, Bloomfield Hills, Dearborn, Michigan and beyond.