Biceps tendon reflex

The Biceps tendon reflex can be elicited when the biceps brachai tendon is hit with a reflex hammer, thus inducing a contraction of the biceps brachii.

Test procedure:
With the patient lying supine or sat on the examining table, the practitioner holds the patient’s arm at the elbow, and places his/her thumb over the patients Biceps Brachai tendon. The practitioner than strikes his/her own thumb using a reflex-hammer.

Test findings (Positive & Negative results):
A positive finding is characterised by the smooth, rapid contraction of the biceps brachai after it’s tendon has been struck followed by a return to the normal resting tone of that muscle.
When performing this reflex, look out for signs of upper or lower motor neurone lesions.

The Biceps reflex is used to examine the integrity of the C5 reflex arc and to a lesser degree the C6 reflex arc.
A reduced or absent reflex may be indicative of a lower motor neurone lesion at the C5 or C6.