Thursday, January 14, 2010
66 - Spurling's test (Foraminal Compression test)
Spurling's test, or foraminal compression test, is a very specific, but not sensitive physical examination maneuver in diagnosing acute cervical (neck)radiculopathy.
Patients with a cervical radiculopathy (compression of a nerve ‘root’ in the neck) can present with a variety of symptoms, including pain, numbness and weakness. Many other disorders can produce similar symptoms. In addition to the clinical history, the neurological examination may show signs suggesting a cervical radiculopathy.
One such sign, ‘Spurling’s test’ is the reproduction of the patient's nerve symptoms by movements of the neck. It is performed by extending the neck, rotating the head, and then applying downward pressure on the head. The test is considered positive if pain radiates into the limb ipsilateral to the side that the head is rotated to.