Patient Satisfaction After Biceps Tenotomy

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Background: Biceps tenotomy and tenodesis are frequently performed for proximal biceps lesions; however, there continues to be debate as to which method is superior. This study examined patient-reported outcomes after biceps tenotomy. Hypothesis: Biceps tenotomy in the setting of concomitant shoulder pathology is a reasonable option with high satisfaction rates and a low incidence of pain and cramping in middle-aged to older individuals. Study Design: Case series; Level of evidence, 4. Methods: A total of 104 patients (mean age, 63.5 years; range, 40-81 years) were evaluated at the time of surgery and at a mean follow-up of 38.4 months (range, 22-57 months). Biceps tenotomy was performed as a component of more extensive shoulder surgery in all patients. Patient satisfaction, frequency of cramping and spasms, biceps pain, weakness, and cosmetic deformity were evaluated at over 1-year follow-up. Results: Ninety-one percent of patients were satisfied or very satisfied with their surgical outcome, and 95% would have their surgery again. Three patients who reported being unsatisfied or very unsatisfied had either advanced glenohumeral arthritis or an irreparable rotator cuff tear. Cosmetic deformity occurred in 13% of patients. Twenty percent reported spasms and cramping in their biceps, and 19% reported some biceps pain; however, frequency of spasms and cramping was typically once weekly, and biceps pain was reported as severe or very severe in only 2 patients. Subjective biceps weakness was reported in 17% of patients. Age had no effect on outcome measures, and female sex was associated with less limitation and greater satisfaction after tenotomy compared with men. Conclusion: Our results indicate that patient-reported downsides to biceps tenotomy were usually mild and/or infrequent and did not affect patient satisfaction. We conclude that biceps tenotomy is a viable option that can lead to a high rate of patient satisfaction and outcomes in middle-aged to older individuals undergoing shoulder surgery with biceps pathology.