SLAP Repair

Bicep Tendon Tear
This arthroscopic procedure is performed to repair a tear of the biceps tendon at the point where it connects to the labrum, a ring of cartilage that surrounds the shoulder socket. A tear at this point is called a SLAP (Superior Labrum Anterior Posterior) tear.

Surgical Procedure
To repair the biceps tendon, the surgeon will need to repair and reattach the tendon using absorbable tacks, wires, or sutures. A few small incisions will be made in the shoulder. An arthroscopic camera is inserted through one of the incisions. The others will be used as access points for other arthroscopic tools. After any loose bits of tissue are removed, the surgeon drills a small hole into the glenoid bone where the labrum has torn away. A tiny anchor tied to a suture is implanted in the glenoid bone. Some tears may be repaired with just one anchor, others require multiple anchors. After this, the surgeon ties the sutures around the torn labrum, reattaching it firmly to the glenoid. If the tendon cannot be repaired, it is released.

Patients generally require a sling for 2 to 4 weeks after surgery. Physical Therapy will be required to strengthen the joint. Most patients can regain normal activities within 3 to 6 months.