Restoring What’s Torn

The bicep is a long muscle that splits into a long and short head. These parts connect to the shoulder and elbow via strong, rope-like tendons. Sometimes, the long head tendon tears off the shoulder due to injury or overuse. In some cases, the tendon affects the labrum, the cartilage surrounding the shoulder socket. This damage creates a superior labrum from anterior to posterior (SLAP) tear. Bicep tenodesis is a surgical procedure to repair and reattach the tendon, but this is just the start. The patient must go through rehabilitation to regain maximum use of the arm.

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What happens during bicep tenodesis?

Bicep tenodesis combines sutures and screws to attach the tendon to the humerus. The surgeon uses general anesthesia, meaning the patient will be asleep during the procedure. An incision is made on the arm to access the tendon. The surgeon ensures the tendon is fully dislodged from the shoulder and cleans any debris. Next, the surgeon passes the suture through the tendon several times. A small hole is drilled through the humerus, and the tendon is pushed into the space. The surgeon will then secure the tendon with a screw and plate. This procedure takes between 1-2 hours, depending on the technique.

Time for recovery

The surgery should reduce shoulder and bicep pain. However, this is dependent on a smooth, systematic recovery. The arm will be in a sling for about 4 weeks. During the first 2 weeks, the patient will focus on pain management using ice packs and medication. The first week also signals the start of physical therapy (PT) appointments. The goal of treatment is to minimize pain while restoring strength and range of motion (ROM) to the shoulder. The patient may see the physical therapist multiple times each week and do additional therapy at home.

The power of rehab

Rehabilitation takes several months, with the first month focusing on gentle shoulder and elbow movement. The intensity and weight will increase each week based on the patient’s progress. The sling comes off around 4 weeks post-op. The patient will continue to perform more exercises to help the arm and elbow reach full ROM. This period can last several more weeks, with and without weights. By weeks 10-12, the patient should have a full range of motion.

Stick with it

From week 12 onwards, the goal is to build more strength and endurance. Exercises include bicep curls, shoulder shrugs, using medicine balls, and stretching. However, most patients still cannot push, pull, or lift heavy objects for long periods. On average, the entire rehabilitation process can take 4-5 months. After this point, the patient will be monitored occasionally to ensure no long-term complications arise. Most patients can return to sports or other intensive activities after 6 months.

A stronger arm

Bicep tenodesis is necessary to repair a damaged shoulder and bicep. However, the procedure must be accompanied by several months of rehabilitation for the best results. Combining exercise, stretching, and massage can help the patient resume daily activities sooner without fearing pain.

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“Dr. Dedhia made everything clear and even scheduled an early follow-up appt so I could get back to work sooner.”

“Anesthesia staff was outstanding!”

“NO wait time, RN Rebecca answered all questions prior to my visit by phone and again answered all questions and concerns while prepping me.”

“Entire staff was knowledgeable and courteous. They genuinely cared for my well being and made sure my wife and I were taken care of.”

“I liked that it was so clean. Every staff member was pleasant and easy to talk with.”

“Experience was amazing. The nurses my son needed at this time couldn’t have been chosen any more perfect. They were supportive and understanding, patient and just great human beings.THANK YOU KINDLY ”

“Anesthesia staff was outstanding!”

“Incredibly professional, friendly and confidence of knowing their roles as healthcare employees. Excellent!”

“I can’t say enough about Marcia and the entire team. The care I received was well beyond anything I could have expected.”

“NO wait time, RN Rebecca answered all questions prior to my visit by phone and again answered all questions and concerns while prepping me.”

“Entire staff was knowledgeable and courteous. They genuinely cared for my well being and made sure my wife and I were taken care of.”

“Dr. Tupper was amazing! He spent time explaining exactly what he was doing, what I would experience and made sure I was comfortable.”

“Marcia and staff were excellent and genuinely cared for my well being. Wish I could have taken them home.”

“The staff was very polite, they were excellent. They explained exactly what was going on.”
“The STAFF from the moment you walk in were the nicest people I’ve encountered at a medical facility.”
“No severe pain – Just a little discomfort – I was asked several times during procedure if I was OK – they showed genuine concern for my well being.”
“Dr. Tupper was amazing! He spent time explaining exactly what he was doing, what I would experience and made sure I was comfortable.”
“Experience was amazing. The nurses my son needed at this time couldn’t have been chosen any more perfect. They were supportive and understanding, patient and just great human beings.THANK YOU KINDLY ”
“Everyone was friendly and concerned about my comfort. They frequently asked how I was doing, or if I needed something.”

“Amazing nurses, very caring and friendly and put both me and my son at ease.”

“I can’t say enough about Marcia and the entire team. The care I received was well beyond anything I could have expected.”

“Efficiency of the staff. Courteous, friendly and caring attitude. Excellent office staff. Pleasant surroundings.”

“Amazing nurses, very caring and friendly and put both me and my son at ease.”

“Everyone was friendly and the place was very clean.”

“Marcia and staff were excellent and genuinely cared for my well being. Wish I could have taken them home.”

“The STAFF from the moment you walk in were the nicest people I’ve encountered at a medical facility.”

“The staff was great, especially Mary and Marcia. Marcia was extremely helpful post-op and made sure I was comfortable and well-cared for.”

“Dr. Best…is the best!”
“Rebecca was amazing. I have always had trouble in the past with getting an IV started. I told Rebecca I was concerned about it. She got it on the 1st try – no digging in my arm and NO bruising the next day.”
“The nurses were very nice and caring!”
“Dr. Dedhia made everything clear and even scheduled an early follow-up appt so I could get back to work sooner.”

“The staff was great, especially Mary and Marcia. Marcia was extremely helpful post-op and made sure I was comfortable and well-cared for.”

“Efficiency of the staff. Courteous, friendly and caring attitude. Excellent office staff. Pleasant surroundings.”

“Everyone was friendly and the place was very clean.”

“No severe pain – Just a little discomfort – I was asked several times during procedure if I was OK – they showed genuine concern for my well being.”

“I liked that it was so clean. Every staff member was pleasant and easy to talk with.”

“The staff was very polite, they were excellent. They explained exactly what was going on.”

“All staff were wonderful.”

“Incredibly professional, friendly and confidence of knowing their roles as healthcare employees. Excellent!”

“Everyone was concerned with my comfort.”

“All staff were wonderful.”

“The nurses were very nice and caring!”
“Everyone was friendly and concerned about my comfort. They frequently asked how I was doing, or if I needed something.”

“Everyone was concerned with my comfort.”

“Rebecca was amazing. I have always had trouble in the past with getting an IV started. I told Rebecca I was concerned about it. She got it on the 1st try – no digging in my arm and NO bruising the next day.”
“Dr. Best…is the best!”

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