How is a drop-arm test performed in the evaluation of rotator cuff injuries?

Updated: Oct 25, 2018
  • Author: Gerard A Malanga, MD; Chief Editor: Craig C Young, MD  more...
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Answer

Abduct the patient's shoulder to 90° and ask the patient to lower the arm slowly to the side in the same arc of movement.

Severe pain or inability of the patient to return the arm to the side slowly indicates a positive test result.

A positive result indicates a rotator cuff tear.


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