Surgery for a distal biceps tendon tear repairs a tendon that is
torn near the elbow. The distal biceps tendon connects the biceps muscle to the
Your arm may be in a splint or elbow brace for 4 to 6
weeks. You may also be in a sling for a week or so. You will feel tired and
have some pain for several days. Your arm may be swollen, but the swelling
should go down a little each day.
You will need rehabilitation
(rehab). This will probably start 4 to 6 weeks after your surgery, after the
splint or brace is removed. Rehab usually lasts for 2 months. It takes about 3
to 4 months for your biceps muscle to heal. At first you will have help with
the exercises, and then your doctor or physiotherapist will give you
exercises to do on your own.
You may be able to do easier daily
activities in 2 to 3 weeks, as long as you do not use your injured arm. Most
people who work at a desk job can return to work in 1 to 2 weeks. If you lift,
push, or pull at work, it may take 3 to 4 months or longer before you can
return to work. You should be able to throw objects and play sports 4 to 6
months after the surgery. How long your recovery takes depends on your injury
and how well your rehab goes.
This care sheet gives you a general
idea about how long it will take for you to recover. But each person recovers
at a different pace. Follow the steps below to get better as quickly as
Follow-up care is a key part of your treatment and safety. Be sure to make and go to all appointments, and
call your doctor or nurse call line if you are having problems. It's also a good idea to know your
test results and keep a list of the medicines you take.
Call 911 anytime you think you may need emergency care. For example, call
Call your doctor or nurse call line now or seek
immediate medical care if:
Watch closely for changes in your health, and be sure to
contact your doctor or nurse call line if you have any problems.
Go to http://www.healthwise.net/ed
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Current as of:
May 23, 2016
Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine
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Care instructions adapted under license by your healthcare professional. If you have questions about a medical condition or this instruction, always ask your healthcare professional. Healthwise, Incorporated disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information.