What are the Symptoms of Bicep Tendonitis?

Biceps tendonitis, also known as bicipital tendonitis, is an inflammation of the tendons that attach the biceps muscle to the shoulder or the elbow. It can result from overuse, strain, or injury. Common symptoms of biceps tendonitis include:

  • Pain: Pain is the most prominent symptom of biceps tendonitis. The pain typically occurs at the front of the shoulder or the upper part of the arm near the bicep muscle. It may be a dull ache that worsens with specific movements, such as lifting or reaching.
  • Weakness: You may experience weakness in the affected arm, particularly when trying to lift or carry objects. This weakness can result from the pain and reduced function of the bicep muscle.
  • Tenderness: The area around the bicep tendon attachment, either at the shoulder or the elbow, may be tender to the touch.
  • Swelling: Swelling around the affected tendon may be present, particularly if the condition is due to an injury or overuse.
  • Crepitus: Some individuals with biceps tendonitis may notice a crackling or popping sensation (crepitus) when moving the arm.
  • Pain at Rest: Pain can also occur at rest, especially during the night, and may interfere with sleep.
  • Reduced Range of Motion: You may have difficulty moving your arm through its full range of motion, especially if the pain limits your movement.

It’s important to differentiate biceps tendonitis from other shoulder or arm conditions, such as rotator cuff injuries or labral tears, which may have similar symptoms. If you experience persistent pain, weakness, or other concerning symptoms in your shoulder or arm, it’s advisable to consult a healthcare professional, such as an orthopedic specialist or physical therapist, for a proper evaluation and diagnosis. Treatment for biceps tendonitis typically includes rest, ice, physical therapy, and, in some cases, anti-inflammatory medications. Severe cases may require corticosteroid injections or, rarely, surgical intervention to repair or reattach the damaged tendon. Early diagnosis and appropriate treatment can help alleviate symptoms and prevent the condition from worsening.