Pec Major Tendon Inflammation

Pec Major - inflammation

The Pectoralis Major tendon is weakest where it inserts into the arm or humerus bone. Common sports that can inflame the tendon include racket sports, rowing, swimming, and weight training.

The pain when performing these activities will probably have increased over a period of time. Resting from these sports is essential to recovering from this shoulder injury. Read more on the symptoms and treatments below.


Symptoms of pec major tendon inflammation include pain at the front of the upper arm towards the shoulder where the biceps tendon inserts into the bone. The patient will experience pain when using the muscle, in particular, trying to pull the arm across the front of the chest against resistance or rotating the arm inwards against resistance.

Pain is likely to have come on gradually and sporting activities which may have caused the injury it such as bench press in weight training are likely to have been painful or uncomfortable for a period of time.

Pectoralis major tendon inflammation explained

The Pectoralis Major muscle is a large powerful muscle at the front of the chest. It used to rotate the arm inwards, pull a horizontal arm across the body, pull the arm from above the head down and pull the arm from the side upwards. The tendon where it inserts into the arm (humerus) can become inflamed. It is common in racket players, rowers, swimmers, throwers and weight trainers.


What can the athlete do?

Rest is important. As this is often related to overuse continuing with normal training will not allow the injury to recover. If it is very painful without having to touch or move it then the athlete should apply ice for the first 2 days, 20 minutes at a time 3 to 8 times a day. After the initial soreness has settled down, apply heat and use a heat retainer. See a sports injury professional who can advise on rehabilitation.

What can a sports injury specialist do?

A doctor may prescribe anti-inflammatory medication such as ibuprofen. A professional therapist can use ultrasound or laser treatment to reduce pain and inflammation. Sports massage techniques may be used, especially in chronic cases. Cross friction massage to the tendon can reduce the injury back to its acute stage and stimulate healing. A full stretching and strengthening program will be advised.

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