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Passive supination


The subject stands with the arm hanging and the elbow bent to 90°. The examiner
stands in front of the subject. Both hands encircle the distal part of the forearm in such a way that the heel of the ipsilateral hand is placed on the dorsal aspect of the ulna and the fingers of the other hand at the palmar aspect of the radius.


Bring the subject’s forearm into full supination by a simultaneous movement of both hands in opposite directions.

Common mistakes

Too much pressure on radius or u Ina may provoke local tenderness.

Normal functional anatomy:

• Rallge: about 90°
• Elld-feel: elastic
• Limiting structures:
– tension in the interosseous membrane, the oblique cord and the anterior ligament of the distal radioulnar joint
– tension in the extensor carpi ulnaris tendon when the posterior aspect of the ulnar notch of the radius impacts against the styloid process of the ulna.

Common pathological situations:

• Pain at full range occurs in arthritis or arthrosis of the distal radioulnar joint and
also in tendinitis of the extensor carpi ulnaris level with the distal end of the ulna.
• Limitation indicates a malunited Colles’ fracture.

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