Neck & Shoulder Pain

Hi, I'm Doctor Jo, a licensed Physical Therapist and Doctor of Physical Therapy. I hope you enjoy my video demos of stretches & exercises for common injuries and syndromes. If you have a question, just ask. Be safe. Have fun. And I hope you feel better soon.

AC Shear Test

The AC Shear Test is used on the AC (acromioclaviular) joint. This is where the clavicle and the acromion come together. If the joint is sprained or separated, it can cause a lot of pain and dysfuntion in the shoulder.

The test can yield both false positives & false negatives, so use it in combination with other diagnostic tools.

To test it, place each palm of your hand around the joint. One over the clavicle, and the other over the spine of the scapula, and then squeeze together. Pain and instability indicate a positive test. However, pain can also be positive for other issues including shoulder bursitis, tendonitis, or a rotator cuff issue.

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Neer's Test for Shoulder Impingement

The Neer’s Test (or Neer Test) is used to determine a shoulder impingement or specifically a subacromial impingement. The test can yield both false positives & false negatives, so use it in combination with other diagnostic tools.

To perform the Neer's Test, start by stabilizing the patient's scapula with one hand, and then passively flex the arm while it is internally rotated. Pain indicates a positive test.

A positive test may also indicate a rotator cuff tear, or shoulder tendonitis or bursitis.

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Empty Can Test for Shoulder Impingement

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Drop Arm Test for a Supraspinatus Tear

The drop arm test is used to determine rotator cuff tears or a supraspinatus tear in particular. The test can yield both false positives & false negatives, so use it in combination with other diagnostic tools.

Bring the patient’s arm out to 90 degrees of abduction. Then let go of their arm and ask them to slowly lower their arm. A positive test is either pain when lowering the arm, or the arm suddenly dropping because they can’t control it back down.

This can also be a sign of other shoulder issues including shoulder tendonitis and shoulder bursitis.

Related Videos:

10 Best Rotator Cuff Exercises for Strengthening

Rotator Cuff Exercises & Stretches with Resistive Bands

Empty Can Test for Shoulder Impingement

The Empty Can Test (aka Jobe's Test) is used to determine a shoulder impingement or a supraspinatus tear. The test can yield both false positives & false negatives, so use it in combination with other diagnostic tools.

The patient can sit or stand for the empty can test. The patient's arm should be elevated to 90 degrees in the scapular plane (about 45 degrees), with the elbow extended, full internal rotation, and pronation of the forearm. Then you push down on the arm. A positive sign is pain and/or the patient can’t hold their arm up.

The test can also be positive for other shoulder issues including shoulder bursitis, tendonitis, or even a labral tear.

Related Videos:

Hawkins Kennedy Test for Shoulder Impingement

Shoulder Pain Stretches & Exercises in Real Time

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