Traumatic Tear of the Latissimus Dorsi Myotendinous Junction: Case Report of a CrossFit-Related Injury

Sports Health. Nov-Dec 2015;7(6):548-52. doi: 10.1177/1941738115595975. Epub 2015 Jul 15.


A case of a latissimus dorsi myotendinous junction strain in an avid CrossFit athlete is presented. The patient developed acute onset right axillary burning and swelling and subsequent palpable pop with weakness while performing a "muscle up." Magnetic resonance imaging examination demonstrated a high-grade tear of the right latissimus dorsi myotendinous junction approximately 9 cm proximal to its intact humeral insertion. There were no other injuries to the adjacent shoulder girdle structures. Isolated strain of the latissimus dorsi myotendinous junction is a very rare injury with a scarcity of information available regarding its imaging appearance and preferred treatment. This patient was treated conservatively and was able to resume active CrossFit training within 3 months. At 6 months postinjury, he had only a mild residual functional deficit compared with his preinjury level.

Keywords: dorsi; latissimus; magnetic resonance imaging; muscle; tear; tendon.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Athletic Injuries / diagnosis*
  • Athletic Injuries / therapy*
  • Humans
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Male
  • Physical Therapy Modalities
  • Superficial Back Muscles / injuries*
  • Superficial Back Muscles / pathology
  • Tendon Injuries / diagnosis
  • Tendon Injuries / therapy