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Neer Impingement Test
The Neer impingement test is used to detect the presence of shoulder impingement syndrome. This test is also called the passive painful arc maneuver and simply the Neer test. With the patient’s shoulder internally rotated, place one hand on the shoulder to limit scapulothoracic motion, and then abduct the shoulder slightly and elevate the arm through the scapular plane to its maximum range.
If the patient experiences pain over the anterior or lateral deltoid, the test is considered a positive test and suggests subacromial impingement. This indicates that the rotator cuff tendons or the subacromial bursa are being compressed between the greater tubercle and the anterior inferior surface of the acromion. The supraspinatus tendon is the most common structure involved. The severity of the impingement is determined by the angle of the arc at which the shoulder becomes painful. Pain at 90 degrees is consistent with mild impingement. Pain at 60 to 70 degrees is consistent with moderate impingement. And, pain at 45 degrees or below is consistent with severe impingement.
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