Partial rupture of the pectoralis major muscle in athletes

Int J Sports Med. 1990 Feb;11(1):85-7. doi: 10.1055/s-2007-1024768.


Partial rupture of the pectoralis major muscle is quite a rare event in sports traumatology and information about its treatment is lacking in literature. In this paper the long term effect of conservative non-surgical treatment in two body-builders and one shot-putter is discussed, who reported the partial rupture while performing bench lifts with barbells. Functional recovery was evaluated a few years after the injury (from 4 to 7) with an isokinetic dynamometer (Cybex II, Lumex INC N.Y.), measuring maximal shoulder adduction-abduction torques at different angular speeds (60, 180, and 300 degrees/s). The results were compared with those of five healthy athletes practicing either body-building or weight-lifting. From the present study we conclude the following: the non-invasive treatment of a partial rupture of the pectoralis major muscle may produce almost complete functional recovery; in normal subjects adduction muscles are advantageous in comparison to the abduction ones.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Athletic Injuries / rehabilitation
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Pectoralis Muscles / injuries*
  • Pectoralis Muscles / physiopathology
  • Rupture
  • Weight Lifting / injuries*