Forced Adduction Test

What is the Forced Adduction Test?

The forced adduction test detects shoulder joint pathology (acromioclavicular joint) or anterior impingement.

The procedure of Performing the Forced Adduction Test

Here is the procedure for performing the forced adduction test

  • At first, the examiner will passively abduct the affected arm (shoulder) to 90 degrees.
  • Then, the examiner will forcibly adduct that 90 degrees abducted arm across the chest towards the normal side. As this, you can see in the diagram below.


Assessment of the Forced Adduction Test

If the patient feels pain in the acromioclavicular joint, this indicates shoulder joint pathology or anterior impingement.

Recent research indicates that anterior internal impingement is a mechanism for activity-related shoulder pain. Impingement syndrome was initially described to occur due to excessive or repetitive contact between the rotator cuff and other structures in the shoulder joint. 

You can also cross-check this by injecting an anaesthetic injection into the shoulder joint. An absence of pain following the injection of anaesthetics can be an indication of joint disease.

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Nerve Root Disorder Test

Duchenne Sign – Used to assess a nerve root disorder.

Thomsen Sign – Indicates or signals sciatic nerve root irritation.

Tiptoe and Heel Walking Test – Identifies or pinpoints a nerve root disorder in the lumbar spine.

Sacroiliac Joint Tests

Mennell’s Sign / Mennell’s Test – Used to assess degenerative processes in the sacroiliac joint.

Springing Test – To detect functional impairment in the Thoracic & Lumbar spine & Sacroiliac Joint.

Gaenslen’s Test – To detect any pathology or dysfunction around the sacroiliac joint.

Test/ Standing Forward Flexion Test – To assess sacroiliac joint dysfunction.

Faber Test / Patrick’s Test – Used to assess the pathology or dysfunction at the hip joint, muscles around the hip joint, and at the sacroiliac joint.

Thoracic Spine Test 

Ott Sign – For Measuring the ROM of the Thoracic Spine

Cervical Exams

Cervical Flexion Compression Test –  To identify if there is a Herniated disk in the Cervical spine.

Jackson Compression Test –  To Detect Cervical Radiculopathy (Cervical Nerve Root Compression).

Pelvic Ligament Tests – used for the assessment of the pelvic ligaments.

Supported Forward Bend Test (Belt Test) – helps in differentiating lumbar pain and sacroiliac pain.

Adam’s Forward Bend Test – For detecting the presence of scoliosis (either functional or structural).

Noble Compression Test/Noble Test –  To assess pain coming from iliotibial band syndrome.

Neer Test –  For detecting the presence of shoulder impingement syndrome.

Some Other Test

Subscapularis Test – Indicates the rupture of the subscapularis muscle

Lowenberg Test – For Detecting Early sign of Venous Thrombosis

Codman’s Test – Examines passive movement in the shoulder joint.

Forced Adduction Test on Hanging Arm – This test also assesses the shoulder joint pathology (acromioclavicular joint disease) or subacromial impingement.

Infraspinatus Test – Identify symptoms of tendinitis or tears of the infraspinatus muscle or tendon.

Bowden Test – Indicates tennis elbow (lateral epicondylitis).


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