Bicipital tendonitis is a very common condition affecting the front of the shoulder or elbow. The biceps muscle flexes our elbow and aids in flexing of the shoulder. The bicep muscle is made of 2 seperate muscle that share a common attachment. The muscle attaches to forearm bone called the ulna at a common site. The origination of the muscle is in 2 separate location on the shoulder blade. The first attachment is in the front of the shoulder just under the collar bone to a protrusion off the scapula called the coracoid process. The second attachment is just above the cup on the scapula where the arm bone ball articulates to make the shoulder joint. The most common site of tendonitis called proximal bicipital tendonitis occurs at the location where the bicipital tendon takes a 90 degree turn after passing through the bicipital grove before attaching above the shoulder cup. The second site site of tendonitis called distal bicipital tendonitis occurs at the attachment of the biceps muscle at the elbow.
Symptoms of Proximal Tendonitis
- Pain in the front of the shoulder during hand elevation overhead.
- Pain in front of shoulder while reaching backward.
- Pain in the front of the shoulder flexing the elbow
Symptoms if Distal Tendonitis
- Pain in the front of the elbow when flexing the arm.
- Pain in the front of the elbow when carrying heavy items.
- Pain in the front of the elbow when straightening the arm.
Treatment of Bicipital Tendonitis
First we need to rest the arm. Usually this condition occurs due to overworking the muscle. We then use Chiropractic Care and Massage Therapy to correct muscle imbalances around the scapula leading to poor mechanics within the shoulder joint. We also instruct patients on stretching muscles to aid in making postural corrections of the shoulder and neck. At home we also recommend Contrast Therapy to decrease inflammation and speed healing.