Rupture of pectoralis major during parallel bar dips: case report and review

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Rupture of the pectoralis major muscle is an uncommon athletic injury that can result in both functional and cosmetic deficiency. To date, most ruptures occurring in athletes have occurred while performing bench press or overhead lifting maneuvers. We describe a case of a pectoralis major rupture occurring while performing weighted parallel bar dips. Despite the popularity of this exercise, injuries associated with this exercise are infrequently reported.

This injury can be easily detected by having the patient perform specific maneuvers on physical examination to accentuate any defect that may be present. In most cases, this injury is surgically repaired, although conservative treatment can be a successful option. Treatment options are discussed and recommendations given.

A partial or complete tear of the pectoralis major muscle is a rare event and is often not easily detected on physical examination. Surgical repair is currently recommended to restore previous levels of strength and to correct the resulting cosmetic defect. Repair is rarely necessary to perform the normal activities of daily living.

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