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Apley Distraction and Compression

Apley Distraction and Compression Test

Sensitivity, Specificity
Validity, Reliability
Likelihood Ratio +/-
Apley Compression Test
To test for meniscus injury
The patient lies in the prone position with the knee flexed to 90 degrees. The patient’s thigh is then anchored to the examining table with the examiner’s knee.
The examiner medially and laterally rotates the tibia, combined first with distraction, while noting any restriction, excessive movement, or discomfort. The process is repeated using compression instead of distraction. If rotation plus distraction is more painful or shows increased rotation relative to the normal side, the lesion is probably ligamentous. If the rotation plus compression is more painful or shows decreased rotation relative to the normal side, the lesion is probably a meniscus injury. [1]

[1] Magee DJ. Orthopedic Physical Assessment: 5th Edition. St. Louis, MO: Saunders Elsevier;2008.
[2] Cleland J. Orthopedic Clinical Examination: An Evidence-Based Approach for Physical Therapists. Carlstadt, NJ: Icon Learning Systems; 2005.