Injuries to the pectoralis major muscle: Diagnosis and management

Matthew T. Provencher, Kent Handfield, Nicole T. Boniquit, Stefanie N. Reiff, Jon K. Sekiya, Anthony A. Romeo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

121 Scopus citations


Injuries to the pectoralis major muscle are relatively infrequent but result in pain, weakness, and deformity of the upper extremity. The usual injury mechanism is during eccentric shortening of the pectoralis major under heavy load, such as when performing a bench press exercise. The ability to detect and treat a pectoralis major rupture is important for both the clinician and the patient and is aided with knowledge of the anatomy, the clinical findings, and results of nonoperative and operative care. It is important to understand the physical demands and desires of the patient as well as to understand the outcomes of both nonoperative and operative care to make an informed decision regarding optimal treatment. This article highlights the importance of the clinical examination in identifying the injury, examines various surgical techniques to repair the rupture, and reports on potential complication and reinjury rates.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1693-1705
Number of pages13
JournalAmerican Journal of Sports Medicine
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • pectoralis major
  • shoulder
  • shoulder injury
  • tendon
  • tendon rupture

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation
  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine


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