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Monday, February 17

Bench press injury: It's a pec tendon tear!

The pectoralis major is the large muscle on the front of the chest wall, and attaches the arm to the rib cage.  The pec major tendon can tear (or rupture), just like any other tendon in the body.  However, the pec tendon almost always tears in young, muscular men, usually while doing the bench press.  Using steroids can increase the risk of this muscle tear, because steroids allow the muscle to grow so large that the tendon can no longer handle the force that the muscle generates.  A pec major tendon rupture often feels like being hit with a bat, and usually causes an obvious bruise and deformity.

Someone with a pec tendon rupture needs surgery to repair the tendon for full function, especially the typical patient who is young, healthy, and active.  The repair is done through a small incision near the armpit, and stitches (sutures) are used to pull the tendon back into its normal position.


Pec tendon tear: Note bruising and dimple on the right side of the chest.

2 comments:

Ali Abdullah said...

Bench press injury can also happened other then taking steroids ?

Dr. Frisella said...

Definitely can happen without steroids. Steroids increase the risk, though, because the muscles get bigger faster than the tendons can handle it.

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