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Chiropractic Research Review

Leg Check an Accurate Clinical Test?

Fifty-five subjects were studied in an attempt to abstract the essential elements of chiropractic prone leg checking. Subjects were lowered to the prone position on a table optimized to detect dynamic leg positions.

Trials consisted of a two-minute control run followed by two, two-minute experimental runs in which compressive or distractive loads were applied incrementally to the subjects' legs.

Results: On average, right legs showed a greater response than left legs under both distractive and compressive loads, and also tended to respond more proportionately to incremental load increases. The average response to compression exceeded the response to distraction, and the correlation of weights with responses was about four times greater in distraction than compression.

These findings give support to the clinical reality of the functional short leg. The prone leg check can be used as a loading procedure to detect non-weight-bearing functional asymmetry in loading responses caused by differences in left-right muscle tone, joint flexibility and tissue stiffness.

Jansen RD, Cooperstein R. Measurement of soft tissue strain in response to consecutively increased progressive and distractive loads on a friction-based test bed. Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics, Jan. 1998;21(1), pp19-26.
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Chiropractic Research Review

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