Heel Thump Test

 Heel Thump Test

What is Heel Thump Test?

  • Heel Thump Test (or called Heel percussion test) is used to determine if there is a tibial stress fracture.
  • The heel thump test is a useful screening tool for evaluating ankle injuries and for differentiating syndesmotic sprains from lateral ankle sprains.

How it's Performed?

  • The patient is in seated or supine,
  • The examiner uses one hand to stabilize the leg,
  • With the other hand, the examiner applies a firm thump on the heel with the fist so that the force is applied to the center of the heel and in line with the long axis of the tibia.

What does a positive Heel Thump Test mean?

A Positive Heel Thump Test:

  • If the pain located in the area of the ankle indicates a syndesmosis injury.
  • Pain along the shaft of the tibia may indicate a stress fracture.

Sensitivity & Specificity

For a high ankle sprain:

  • Sensitivity: 30%
  • Specificity: 93.5%


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