Faculty Advisor(s)

Matthew Somma

Document Type

Course Paper

Publication Date



© 2018 Ali Woller


Background/Purpose: The long head of the biceps plays an important role stabilizing the shoulder. Most of the current literature supports surgical intervention following a complete rupture, but there is little evidence that supports conservative management. Due to a lack of evidence supporting conservative management of a complete rupture of the long head of the biceps, the purpose of this case study was to evaluate the progress this patient made over a six-week period with outpatient physical therapy addressing his impairments resulting from his injury. Case Description: The patient was a 51-year-old male with a confirmed diagnosis of a complete rupture of the long head of his biceps. The initial evaluation took place two and a half months after the accident due to a delay in seeking medical attention. He had a decreased ROM and strength, increased pain levels that effected his work, and an impaired QuickDASH score. Outcomes: After six weeks of conservative treatment, the patient had an increase in ROM, improved QuickDASH score, and reported a decrease in pain and increase in work capacity. Discussion: Despite the long duration between onset of injury and physical therapy, the patient appeared to benefit from conservative management based on objective findings and patient reported results.


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