Tests & Screenings
Getting the most accurate diagnosis is one of the first steps in proper treatment for your knee condition or disease. At West Suburban Medical Center, we offer a wide-range of tests and screenings at our hospital locations or our fully equipped Imaging Centers. See below for common diagnostic tests and screenings.
Anterior and Posterior Drawer Test
A physician requests an anterior drawer test to assess the strength of the ACL, while the posterior drawer test is used for the PCL. On both tests, the patient lies flat on the back as the examiner bends the knee 90 degrees. Pulling the shin forward checks the stability of the ACL. Pulling the shin backward checks the stability of the PCL.
Collateral Ligament Stability
A physician uses this to detect problems of the collateral ligaments: MCL and LCL. With the patient lying flat on the back with the knee slightly bent, the examiner shifts the shin side to side. If the knee opens up excessively, there may be damage to the LCL or MCL.
A typical test for ACL tears, the Lachman Test is performed by an examiner with the patient lying flat on the back. The examiner bends the knee 20 degrees, pulling the shin forward while stabilizing the thigh. Knees with an injured ACL often demonstrate a less firm endpoint and more movement.
For physicians, testing knee mobility is a key factor in measuring knee health. If arthritis, bone spurs, or swelling are present, the range of motion of the knee typically becomes limited.
McMurray’s test is performed by an examiner with the patient lying flat on the back and the examiner bending the knee. A click is felt over the meniscus tear as the knee is brought from full flexion to full extension.
Physicians use this assessment to determine if the kneecap is unstable. The examiner puts pressure on the kneecap. If the patient feels as if the kneecap is going to pop out of its groove, the kneecap may be unstable
During this test, the patient lies flat with the leg extended. The examiner pushes down the kneecap as the patient flexes the thigh muscles. If the patient experiences a grinding sensation, damaged cartilage may be present.
Used to find cartilage damage, the examiner lifts the kneecap slightly, placing direct pressure on the undersurface of the kneecap.
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