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Article
February 1984

Forward Elevation and Leg Extension in Diagnosis of Nerve Root Compression

Arch Neurol. 1984;41(2):138. doi:10.1001/archneur.1984.04050140036019

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Abstract

To the Editor.  —Straight-leg raising in the supine position is a timehonored test in the diagnosis of herniated lumbar disk with nerve root compression. Struck by the tendency of patients to walk with a partially flexed knee when suffering from a herniated lumbar disk, I tested a number of them by having them forcefully elevate the leg in a forward direction while trying to keep the knee extended. This maneuver, in effect, is straight-leg raising in the standing position. On the side of the herniated disk, the patient is unable to elevate the leg without flexion of the knee. On the unaffected side, the leg can be elevated in extension, but partial flexion at the knee of the affected leg may be observed as a full range of motion is reached by the normal leg.In my experience, this test is as valuable as the standard straight-leg raising in diagnosis

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