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Resisted extension

Procedure.

Resist the subject’s attempt to extend the thumb

Common mistakes.

Hyperextension of the first metacarpophalangeal joint takes place.

Anatomical structures tested:

Muscle function:
• Extensor pollicis longus
• Extensor pollicis brevis
• Abductor pollic;s longus.

Common pathological situations:

• Pain occurs in tendinous lesions of the abductor pollicis longus and extensor pollicis brevis (de Quervain’s disease) and extensor pollicis longus (crepitating tenosynovitis).
• Weakness is possibly the result of a rupture of the extensor pollicis longus. It may also indicate a neurological condition, either of the radial nerve or of the nerve root.

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