Orthopaedic Exams

Printer-friendly version
General Principles
The general principle in the orthopaedic exam is ‘look, feel, move’ (then special tests). If you forget what to do in the exam, just come back to this, and you can’t go far wrong.
 
Usually you check active movements first. If the patient does not have a full range of active movement, you can perform passive movements to check limitations.
 
When asking the patient to perform active movements, rather than trying to describe the movement, it is easiest to perform it yourself, and ask the patient to copy.