Which physical findings are characteristic of bicipital tendonitis?

Updated: Nov 21, 2018
  • Author: Britt A Durham, MD; Chief Editor: Sherwin SW Ho, MD  more...
  • Print

See the list below:

  • Local tenderness is usually present over the bicipital groove, which is typically located 3 inches below the anterior acromion. The tenderness may be localized best with the arm in 10 º of external rotation.

  • Flexion of the elbow against resistance aggravates the patient's pain.

  • Passive abduction of the arm in an arc maneuver may elicit pain that is typical of impingement syndrome; however, this finding may be negative in cases of isolated bicipital tendinitis.

  • Speed test: The patient complains of anterior shoulder pain with flexion of the shoulder against resistance, while the elbow is extended and the forearm is supinated.

  • Yergason test: The patient complains of pain and tenderness over the bicipital groove with forearm supination against resistance, with the elbow flexed and the shoulder in adduction. Popping of subluxation of the biceps tendon may be demonstrated with this maneuver.

  • The remainder of the examination should include evaluation and documentation of active and passive range of motion (ROM) and joint stability in order to assess the rotator cuff and glenoid labrum. A complete evaluation includes a complete neurovascular assessment.

  • Bicipital tendinitis with labral tears or rotator cuff tears may not improve if all the conditions are not treated.

Did this answer your question?
Additional feedback? (Optional)
Thank you for your feedback!