Shoulder OSCE Exam Flashcards Preview

Phase 2B Medicine > Shoulder OSCE Exam > Flashcards

Flashcards in Shoulder OSCE Exam Deck (44)
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What are the first 3 things you should do as part of your introduction?

Wash hands
Introduce yourself
Confirm pt details (name / DOB)


How would you explain the examination?

"Today I need to examine your shoulder joints. This will involve looking, feeling and moving them."


How would you check your pt's understanding & gain consent?

"Does everything I've said make sense?"
"Are you happy for me to examine your shoulders?"


How would you like to position the pt?

Expose pt's upper body appropriately.
Position the pt standing.


What should you do before you examine the pt?

Ask if the pt currently has any pain.


What 4 things are you looking for when assessing the pt anteriorly?

Scars: previous surgery / trauma

Asymmetry of the shoulder girdle: Scoliosis / Arthritis / Trauma

Swelling: Inflammatory joint disease / effusion / anterior dislocation

Muscle wasting: Deltoids (axillary nerve injury -> traumatic / iatrogenic??)


What 3 things are you looking for when assessing the lateral aspect of the pt?

Scars: previous surgery / trauma

Muscle wasting: deltoid

Alignment of the shoulder girdle: misalignment - dislocation / scoliosis


What 5 things are you looking for when assessing the posterior aspect of the patient?

Scars: previous surgery / trauma

Asymmetry / deformity: winged scapula (long thoracic nerve injury) / scoliosis

Assess muscle bulk of trapezius: symmetry / wasting

Para-vertebral muscles: note any swelling / wasting

Look for muscle wasting in the supra- and infra- spinatus fossa: wasting of supra / infraspinatus (nerve injury / chronic rotator cuff tear)


Which muscles are you assessing for wasting when looking from the anterior aspect?



Which muscles are you assessing for wasting when you look from the posterior aspect?

Para-vertebral muscles


When you feel the shoulder joints, what are the 2 main things you should be doing?

1. Assess the temperature of shoulder joints. Warmth suggests inflammatory arthropathy / infection.

2. Palpate the various components of the shoulder girdle. Note any swelling / tenderness


What are the 7 components of the shoulder girdle that you should palpate?

Sterno-Clavicular joint
Acromio-clavicular joint
Coracoid process
Head of humerus
Greater tuberosity of humerus
Spine of scapula


What are 'compound movements' used for?

Compound mvts are used as a rapid screening tool for shoulder joint pathology as they test a number of the rotator cuff muscles in one go.
If pt experiences pain or is unable to perform these mvts, you would then proceed to perform a more detailed examination of the shoulder joint.


What are the 2 compound movements?
What are they testing?

Put your hands behind your head: external rotation & abduction
Put your hands as far up your back as you can: internal rotation & adduction


What type of movement are 'compound movements'?

Active movement


When conducting a full shoulder examination, what movements should you test first?

Active movement.


How would you assess a pt's flexion ability?
What is the normal range?

Ask pt to raise their arms forwards until they point upwards
Normal: 150-180o


How would you assess a pt's extension ability?
What is the normal value?

Ask pt to keep their arms straight and extend them behind them.
Normal = 40o


How would you assess a pt's ABduction ability?
What's the normal value?

Ask pt to lift their arms away from their sides as far as possible.
Normal: up to 180o


How would you assess a pt's Adduction ability?
What's the normal range?

Ask pt to bring their arms across their trunk to opposite sides.
Normal: 30 - 40o


How would you assess a pt's external rotation ability?
What's the normal range?

Ask pt to hold their elbows to their body, flexed at 90o, and then move their forearms outwards in an arc-like motion.
Normal: 80 - 90o


How would you assess a pt's internal rotation ability?
What's the average?

With the pt's elbow flexed at 90o (arm by their side), as them to place their hand behind their back & reach up as far up the spine as they can manage.
Normal average: T4 - T8


How would you assess the movement of the scapula?

- Ask pt to abduct their shoulder.
- Simultaneously palpate the inferior pole of the scapula.
- Assess the degree & smoothness of movement of the scapula
- On average, 50 - 70% of the first movement occurs at the glenohumeral joint.


If glenohumeral joint movement is reduced due to injury / inflammation, how is abduction affected?

The majority of abduction will occur via increased scapula movement over the chest wall.


What instructions should you give your pt when you assess a pt's passive movements?

Ask pt to fully relax & allow you to move their arm for them.
If they experience pain, they should let you know.
Repeat all active movements passively.


When passively moving a pt's joint, what should you be feeling for?

Feel for any crepitus during movement of the joint.


What are the 5 'Special tests' for assessing the shoulder joint?

1. Jobe's test (supraspinatus assessment)
2. The painful arc (impingement syndrome)
3. External rotation against resistance.
4. External rotation in abduction
5. Internal rotation against resistance (Gerber lift off test)


How would you conduct a supraspinatus assessment (Jobe's test)?

1. Abduct the arm to 90o & angle the arm forward by ~30o (so that the shoulder is in the plane of the scapula).
2. Internally rotate the arm so that the thumb points down toward the floor. Now push down on the arm whilst the pt resists the pressure.
3. Repeat the assessment on the other arm.


What does 'Jobe's test' test for?

Weakness in the supraspinatus and/or impingement. Weakness may represent a tear in the supraspinatus or pain due to impingement.


How would you assess for impingement of supraspinatus?

The painful arc test:
1. Passively abduct the pt's arm to its maximum point of abduction.
2. Ask the pt to lower their arm slowly back to a neutral position.