Pectoralis Major Tendon Insertion Anatomy and Description of a Novel Anatomic Reference


Pectoralis major rupture is an uncommon injury often treated surgically, requiring anatomic knowledge of the tendon insertion. This study defines the pectoralis major tendon insertion footprint and a novel anatomic relationship. Twelve cadaver shoulders were evaluated and measured using a standard surgical ruler to demonstrate the normal anatomic footprint. Measurements were taken from the anterior medial margin of the articular surface of the humeral head to the superior margin of the pectoralis major insertion and its relation to the latissimus dorsi tendon insertion. The average length and width of the pectoralis major insertion were 73.3 š 10.0 mm and 3.3 š 0.54 mm, respectively, consistent with previous publications. On average, the superior margin of the pectoralis tendon was within 1 mm of the latissimus dorsi insertion and 41.2 š 9.27 mm from the articular margin. These points form a new anatomic reference of the latissimus dorsi, providing an intraoperative reference point when performing pectoralis major muscle tendon repair. (Journal of Surgical Orthopaedic Advances 27(1):39–41, 2018)

Key words: anatomic insertion, pectoralis major, pectoralis major repair, pectoralis major rupture

CPT Joseph H. Dannenbaum, MD; LT Michael D. Eckhoff, BS; MAJ Joseph W. Galvin, DO; CPT Betsey K. Bean, DO; MAJ David J. Wilson, MD; and COL(Ret) Edward D. Arrington, MD