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Pectoralis Minor Injuries

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Other Names

  • Pec Minor Tendinitis
  • Bench Presser's Shoulder
  • Bench-Presser's Shoulder
  • Pec Minor Tendonitis


  • This article covers injuries to Pectoralis Minor
  • In general, the literature is very sparse on the subject


  • Rare, needs to be updated



  • Primarily seen in physical active individuals
  • In one study of 7 patients, 3 cases were dominant arm, 4 were nondominant[1]
  • Mean duration of symptoms was approximately 4.5 weeks
  • Onset was generally subacute and gradual
  • Frequently associated with bench press exercise


Risk Factors

  • Sports[1]
    • Rugby
    • Swimming
    • Bodybuilding
    • Weight lifting

Differential Diagnosis

Clinical Features

  • General: Physical Exam Shoulder
  • History
    • Patients tend to describe the pain as moderate-severe
    • Limiting ability to participate in sports and ADLs
  • Physical
    • Patients tend to have tenderness at the coracoid process, especially juxto-medially
    • Bench press and active contraction should reproduce the symptoms


  • Radiograph
  • Ultrasound
    • Typically normal
  • Diagnostic injection[1]
    • There is no diagnostic gold standard
    • Medial coracoid tenderness and pain on performance of active contraction test and/or the bench-press maneuver
    • Immediate reduction/disappearance of this tenderness/pain after injection of a local anaesthetic agent


  • N/A



  • First line therapy
  • Corticosteroid Injection
    • Bhatia et al sucecsfully treated 7 athletes with a single ultrasound guided corticosteroid injection into the enthesis[1]
  • Relative rest
  • Physical Therapy including stretching exercises for anterior chest and pec minor
  • Gradual return to sports


  • Unknown

Rehab and Return to Play


  • Unknown

Return to Play

  • Typically 12 weeks before return to previous level of play


  • Unknown

See Also


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Bhatia DN, de Beer JF, van Rooyen KS, et al. The “bench-presser’s shoulder”: an overuse insertional tendinopathy of the pectoralis minor muscle. British Journal of Sports Medicine 2007;41:e11.
Created by:
John Kiel on 24 February 2020 23:27:52
Last edited:
1 October 2022 19:08:10