Bicep Tendonitis

Inflammation in the principal tendon that connects the bicep muscle to the bones of the  shoulder is known or recognized as Bicep tendonitis or bicipital tendonitis.  The most common cause of this disorder is  excessive and certain types of work or repetitive sport motions.   Biceps tendonitis may happen slowly from the effects of wear over time or may occur suddenly as a result of a direct injury. The tendon may also evolve into inflammation from other shoulder complications such as impact, rotator cuff tears,  or instability.

bicep tendonitis

Tendons, which are what’s involved with bicep tendonitis, are very strong bands of tissue which connect your muscles to your bones. When these tendons are used excessively or injured, inflammation and pain can occur which is referred to as tendonitis or tendinopathy. The most common cause of tendonitis is excessive use over a long period of time. It commonly occurs in the elderly  and with athletics due to the excessive use of the body that is associated with sports, especially high level athletics.

Bicep tendonitis which is medically referred to as bicipital tendonitis, is a term used to describe general inflammation, tenderness, or pain around the bicep on the upper arm near the front part of your shoulder. This condition is commonly associated with other injuries and rarely occurs on its own. Bicep tendonitis is usually found along with rotator cuff injuries and even impingement. This is one of the easier types of tendonitis to treat and rarely requires invasive surgery to repair.bicep tendonitis

Bicep Tendonitis Causes

  • Tendon calcification
  • Multi-directional instability
  • Heavy trauma to the upper arm
  • Overuse

Any injury sustained to the shoulder stabilizers can create problems for other muscles connected to the joint.


Pain commonly occurs in the evening
Pain while carrying or lifting things
You’ll experience pain towards the front of your shoulder when you move your arm. The pain might be more severe when raising your arm above your shoulder. When you touch the shoulder area you would also experience pain.


A doctor would need to examine the arm and shoulder area especially around the bicep muscles and tendons. In some cases the doctor may order x-rays, ultrasounds, or an MRI. This type of injury does not normally require surgery.


Activity would need to be modified to allow more rest. If the area is inflamed steps wold be taken to bring the inflammation down as well exercises to stretch and strengthen the muscles
Most types of lifting would need to be stopped
Plenty of stretching of the biceps and shoulder muscles
Anti-inflammatory medications
Ice packs
Possibly get a cortisone injection bring down the pain and inflammation
Rehabilitation exercises

The most effective treatment for bicep tendonitis is strength training and resistance exercises. As mention earlier this type of tendonitis rarely occurs on its own and is commonly associated with other should injuries such as a rotator cuff injury. Because of this many of the exercises will involved strengthening of the should and by extension the biceps muscles. These exercises should be minor to begin with and as  you regain strength the weight can be increased strengthening the muscle further and reducing the inflammation and irritation causes by the .