Approach to Latissimus Dorsi and Teres Minor Injuries in the Baseball Pitcher

  • Brandon J. EricksonEmail author
  • Nina Petronico
  • Anthony A. Romeo
Injuries in Overhead Athletes (J Dines and C Camp, section editors)
Part of the following topical collections:
  1. Topical Collection on Injuries in Overhead Athletes


Purpose of Review

Tears of the latissimus dorsi and teres major are uncommon but significant injuries, most frequently seen in high-level, overhead throwing athletes. Diagnosis can be challenging, as there are no pathognomonic signs, symptoms, or physical exam findings associated with latissimus dorsi/teres major tears, and the clinician must have a high suspicion for this injury. While many of these tears can be treated non-operatively, a subset of these benefits from surgical intervention. Rehabilitation following operative and non-operative treatments of these injuries is extensive, and timing of return to sport can be variable from 3 to 12 months.

Recent Findings

The literature surrounding latissimus dorsi/teres major injuries is sparse. Several small studies have shown good results in patients with mild to moderate tears that were treated non-operatively. Recent evidence has shown good results following operative repair of larger tears, with excellent return to sport rates. Furthermore, focused rehabilitation is imperative when treating patients with latissimus dorsi/teres major injuries to allow these athletes to return to sport.


Latissimus dorsi/teres major tears are uncommon but significant injuries in the throwing athlete. Prompt diagnosis, proper treatment, and focused rehabilitation will allow these patients to return to sport in a safe and efficient manner.


Latissimus dorsi Teres major Baseball Pitcher Surgery Shoulder 


Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

Brandon J. Erickson and Nina Petronico declare no conflict of interest.

Anthony A. Romeo reports grants, personal fees, and non-financial support from Arthrex, non-financial support from AANA, has completed research work for Aesculap/B. Braun, Histogenics, Medipost, NuTech, OrthoSpace, Smith & Nephew, and Zimmer, and personal fees from Saunders/Mosby-Elsevier and SLACK Incorporated.

Human and Animal Rights and Informed Consent

This article does not contain any studies with human or animal subjects performed by any of the authors.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Brandon J. Erickson
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • Nina Petronico
    • 3
  • Anthony A. Romeo
    • 1
  1. 1.Sports Medicine/Shoulder and Elbow DivisionRothman Orthopaedic InstituteNew YorkUSA
  2. 2.Rothman Orthopaedic InstituteTarrytownUSA
  3. 3.Hospital for Special SurgeryNew YorkUSA

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