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Inspect/palpate to evaluate:

- bone integrity
- posture
- joint funtion
- muscle strength
- gait

Medical history includes:

- any past medical/surgical disorders
- any sx related to onset/duration/location/pain
- does activity make it better or worse
- family medical history

Assessment of bony skeleton includes:

motation of deformities
body alignment
abnormal growths
shortened extremities
abnormal angulation
crepitus (grating/crackling sound/sensation)

3 Common spinal curvatures:

1. scoliosis
2. kyphosis
3. lordosis

Scoliosis is a:

lateral curving deviation

Kyphosis ia a:

- humb back
- an increased roundness of the throacic
spinal curve


- sway back
- exaggeration of the lumbar spine curvature

Assessment of articular system includes:

- stability of joints
- deformities
- any nodular formation
- pulses in extremities


- passive
- active
- limited

When assessing ROM:

- keep the motion steady
- avoid causing pain

ROM includes pts ability to:

- change positions
- muscle strength
- coordination
- size of indiviual muscles

Assess muscle groups for:

- strength and equality
- compare R & L muscles in strength and size

Normal muscle strength is:

equal bilaterally

Joints are examined for:

excessive fluid

The most common site for fluid accumulation is:

the knee

Edema dn elevated temp may be signs of:

active inflammation in the joint

Normal joint movement is:

stable and smooth

If a joint makes a crack or snap sound when passively moved, may indicate:

a ligament slipping over a bony prominence

Deformities are cause by:

- contrctures
- dislocations
- subluxation
(partial separation of articular surface)

Subluxation is the:

partial separation of an articular [joint] surface

Nodular formations are produced by muscoskeletal diseases such as:

- gout
- rheumotoid arthritis
- osteoarthritis

Pulse points in the extremeites are palpated to asses for:

weak and absent pulses


an injury to a muscle/tendon caused by overuse/overstretcing

Acute strain:

caused when performing unaccustomed exercises vigorously

Chronic strain:

repeated overuse of certain muscles

Acute strains are:

- acute onset of severe pain
- rest and possible immobilization
- immed aft injury -cold 20-30min, remove 1hr
during first 24 hrs (reduce edema)
- then apply heat

Chronig strains are:

- gradual onset w/affected muscles feeling
stiff or sore
- require no specific tx

Sprain is an:

injury to ligaments surrounding a joint

Sprains are caused by:

a suddent twist, wrench or fall

Symptoms of a sprain include:

- pain
- edema
- loss of motion
- ecchymosis

Xrys can reveal soft tissue edema but:

no evidence of bone or joint injury

Tx of a sprain:

- rest
- ice
- compression
- elevation


when articular surgaces of a joint are not longer in contact (out of joint)

Displaced bone may:

- hinder blood supply
- damage nerves
- tear ligaments
- rupture muscle attachements

Traumatic dislocations are considered:

orthopedic ERs

Congenital dislocations are:

present at birth

Spontaneous or pathologic dislocations are caused by:

disease affecting joints

Symptoms of a dislocation include:

- localized joint pain
- loss of funtion of the joint
- change in length of extremity/contour of joint

Dx of a dislocation is based on:

- symptoms
- physical exam
- x-rays

X-rays for dislocations reveal:

complete or partial sepration of articulating surfaces

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