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Anatomy Atlases: Illustrated Encyclopedia of Human Anatomic Variation: Opus I: Muscular System: Alphabetical Listing of Muscles: T: Teres Minor

Illustrated Encyclopedia of Human Anatomic Variation: Opus I: Muscular System: Alphabetical Listing of Muscles: T

Teres Minor

Ronald A. Bergman, PhD
Adel K. Afifi, MD, MS
Ryosuke Miyauchi, MD

Peer Review Status: Internally Peer Reviewed

Absence of teres minor has been reported. Teres minor may be absent in 4% of individuals (Mori, 1964). The partial separation into two parts has also been reported; one inserted onto the the greater tubercle and the other onto the neck of the humerus (teres minimus scapulae [Gruber]). The origin of the muscle may be expanded so that it covers the infraspinatus entirely replacing the fascial sheet (deep fascia) usually covering that muscle. Teres minor may fuse with infraspinatus in 20% of cases studied (Mori).

Detached slips sometimes are seen extending from the vertebral border of the scapula to the greater tubercle of the humerus probably represent detached parts of the muscular sheet and the fascial sheet may represent that muscular sheet in a fascial form.

Various slips described with the deltoideus may be related, suggesting an associated developmental relationship of these two muscles.


Anson, B.J., Ed .(1966) Morris' Human Anatomy, 12th ed. The Blakiston Division, McGraw-Hill Book Company, New York.

Gruber, W. (1875) Ein Musculus teres minimus scapulae. Arch. Anat. Physiol. Wissen. Med. 1875:593-598.

Hoshiba, M. (1937) The M. teres minor. Kanazawa Ikadaigaku Kaibogakukyoshitsu Gyosekishu 27:73-77.

Macalister, A. (1875) Observations on the muscular anomalies in the human anatomy. Third series with a catalogue of the principal muscular variations hitherto published. Trans. Roy. Irish Acad. Sci. 25:1-130.

Mori, M. (1964) Statistics on the musculature of the Japanese. Okajimas Folia Anatomica Japonica 40:195-300.

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