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Load and Shift Test
The load and shift test is used to detect anterior and posterior glenohumeral joint laxity. This test is performed with the patient in a seated position and with the involved arm supported on a pillow. The shoulder should be slightly abducted and the elbow flexed to approximately 90 degrees.
To perform this test, stabilize the scapula with one hand and grasp the humeral head with the other. While pressing the humeral head into the glenoid fossa, alternately push the humeral head anteriorly and posteriorly. The test is positive if there is excessive movement of the humeral head in the glenoid fossa suggesting glenohumeral capsular laxity. Typically, the humeral head moves up to 25% of its diameter. Grade one capsular laxity is indicated if the movement is up to 50% and grade two is indicated by the movement of greater than 50%.
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