Common Ankle Tests in Orthopedic Examination

The following is a list of the many common tests used by physical therapists / physiotherapists and other orthopedic/orthopaedic practitioners when examining the ankle. The tests will eventually have links to descriptions of the tests as well as video demonstrations. Before learning about the examination of the ankle it is useful to review basic ankle anatomy. If you know of a test that should be included in this list, please let us know.

Lateral View of the Ankle
Lateral View of the Ankle
Public Domain,

The ankle consists of three joints;  talocrural joint, the subtalar joint, and the Inferior tibiofibular joint. The talocrural joint is commonly known as the ankle proper and is a synovial hinge joint. The ankle consists of three bones; the talus, the fibula and the tibia. The movements of the joint are dorsiflexion and plantarflexion.  The following is a list of some of the many special tests that have been developed for the ankle.

Orthopedic Special Tests for the Ankle

  • Anterior Drawer Test
  • Compression Test
  • Eversion Stress Test
  • Eversion Talar Tilt Test
  • Feiss’ Line Test
  • Heel Tap Test
  • Homan’s Sign Test
  • Inversion Stress Test
  • Inversion Talar Tilt Test
  • Kleiger’s Test (External Rotation Test)
  • Thompson’s Squeeze Test – for Achilles tendon rupture
  • Tibial Torsion Test

Special Tests for Orthopedic Examination

First published more than 20 years ago, Special Tests for Orthopedic Examination, now in its Fourth Edition, continues to follow the authors’ initial goals of providing a simple, pocket-sized manual for practical learning purposes.

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