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History and Examination of the Spine 

History and Examination of the Spine
History and Examination of the Spine

Maggie Henjum

, and Jodi Young

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date: 03 March 2021

An efficient model for history-taking and physical examination of the spine using a current evidence-based approach provides the foundation for a targeted assessment and treatment plan. Taking a history and examining the cervical, thoracic, and lumbar spine may be complex, especially if the clinician does not use a systematic approach for collecting subjective and objective data. Included in this chapter are best evidence strategies for observing a patient’s posture and movement patterns, assessing active and passive range of motion, and performing neurologic testing, strength testing, special tests, and palpation. Special attention is given to test clusters and examination items with strong psychometric properties that provide efficient and accurate examination results. By incorporating these strategies into the history and examination, the examiner should be able to rule in or out particular diagnoses that will direct overall management of the patient’s symptoms.

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