Reliability of Brachial Plexus Tension (Elvey) Test in Healthy Subjects
Nesrin BOLUKBASI, Gulcin KAYMAK, Mehmet BEYAZOVA, Vildan SUMBULOGLU
Brachial plexus tension test (BPTT) aids in differentiating between local arm conditions causing pain and cervical/brachial plexus conditions with pain referral into the arm. This study aimed to report the results of this test in healthy subjects and assess the inter-observer reliability. 44 young and healthy volunteers (21 males and 23 females) were tested on by two examiners. The test consisted of three stages. Stage II revealed a stretch sensation in cubital fossa in most of the subjects, while pain, pulling sensation and paraesthesiae were mostly observed in the hand and fingers in the third stage. Statistical assessment revealed poor inter-observer reliability (Cohen's kappa coefficient 0.38-0.43) for both stage II and III, and for both anatomical localization and type of sensation. Radiographic and electrophysiologic investigations need to be undertaken to verify the results of BPTT before utilizing the test as a routine procedure in musculoskeletal examination.