Patients in Naples and Bonita Springs, FL

The biceps muscle is situated in the front of the upper arm, and it attached to the bones of the shoulder in 2 places and the radius bone at the elbow in one. The distal biceps tendon, which attaches at the elbow, assists with elbow flexion and rotation of the forearm. Tears of this tendon are not as common as others, and are usually caused by an acute injury, like catching a heavy falling object. These types of tears cause greater weakness in the arm than bicep tears at the shoulder. Once the distal bicep tendon is torn, it will not grow back to the bone and heal. Surgery to repair the tendon can be performed to repair full arm function.

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Description

With injury, tendon tissue becomes worn and may tear. Partial tendon tears are less common than complete tears, where the tendon completely separates into two pieces. Both partial and complete tears can occur in the dominant and non-dominant arm. Also, men that are 30 years or older have a higher risk for biceps tendon injuries. Those who smoke or use corticosteroids are also prone to these injuries. In Naples, FL, surgery can repair torn tendons.

Symptoms

When a patient tears their tendon, they will hear a small “pop” and notice a deep pain near the elbow. Swelling and bruising may occur. Other symptoms may be present, including:

  • Swelling near the elbow
  • Difficulty twisting and bending the arm
  • A noticeable bulge in the upper arm from the recoiled muscle
  • Bruising near the elbow
  • Weakness when the forearm is twisted

If symptoms persist, patients can contact Dr. Goldberg. As a Naples orthopedic surgeon, he performs tendon repair surgeries for patients in Naples and Bonita Springs.

Treatment

A biceps tendon injury will not heal on its own. An acute distal biceps tendon tear is best treated surgically within a few days of the injury for best results. Depending on the extent of the injury, different surgical approaches are used. One or two incisions are made near the elbow for tendon access.

Recovery

After surgery, a cast or splint will cradle your arm. Physical therapy may be recommended to help restore the full range of motion and strength in your arm. Resistance exercises may also be recommended as part of your rehabilitation. It is important to follow the recovery plan that Dr. Goldberg prescribes for you, and restrict any major activities for 3 months after surgery.