Management of Failed Biceps Tenodesis or Tenotomy: Causation and Treatment

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The purpose of this paper is to review the management of long head biceps tendon pathology, with a particular emphasis on a prior failed biceps tenotomy or tenodesis. Failed biceps tenotomy generally results from a lack of thorough preoperative discussion of potential outcomes rather than from technical problems. Patients with unsatisfactory results can be treated with conversion to a biceps tenodesis. Failed biceps tenodesis is usually recognized with persistent pain in the area of the bicipital groove, often caused by either the mechanical failure of the tenodesis or associated shoulder pathology that is not addressed at the time of the primary surgery. Operative treatment options include revision tenodesis or biceps tenotomy. The subpectoral approach provides excellent versatility and ability to meet technical objectives when performing revision tenodesis, by removing the tendon completely from the groove and preserving biceps function.

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