Physical Examination of the Joints

Ben L. Allen Jr., MD
JAMA. 1965;193(11):981. doi:10.1001/jama.1965.03090110119050.
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Written for the novice in arthritic diseases by a group of rheumatologists, this book concisely describes the physicial examination of joints in the arthritic patient. The individual chapters, each dealing with a separate joint, follow a fairly rigid format, discussing in sequence essential anatomy, inspection, palpation, range of motion, and, when applicable, special examinations. The authors devote their analysis almost entirely to detecting inflammatory changes in the joint, considering noninflammatory findings only lightly. The length of each section is determined by the complexity of the joint and its importance in arthritic diseases; for example, the sternoclavicular joint receives 2 pages and the knee 25.

The illustrations are excellent. Numerous photographs demonstrate many of the techniques of examination and dramatically portray joints involved by inflammatory disease. Halftone drawings with the synovial membrane in blue illustrate the anatomy of most of the joints. For many of them, line drawings indicate the range


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