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August 21, 1967

The Lasègue Test

JAMA. 1967;201(8):641. doi:10.1001/jama.1967.03130080083032

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To the Editor:—  As orthopedic consultant to a disability-evaluation agency, I analyze medical reports from physicians, specialists, and generalists throughout the country. The Lasègue test is commonly used in the physical examination of patients with low back impairments. It is evident that the method of performance of this diagnostic maneuver varies with the physician.Reference to the original literature revealed the following facts.The Lasègue test consists of two maneuvers. First, a passive straight-leg-raising test is carried out (Fig 1). Then as the second, and "verification" maneuver, the leg is again raised (jack-knifed) but with the knee flexed (Fig 2). Whereas the first maneuver will produce back and/or leg pain in the presence of low back pathology, the second maneuver can be carried out without the production of pain.A positive Lasègue sign therefore consists of (1) the production of an anatomically proper pain on straight-leg raising and (2) absence