Indications

Ankle Drawer Test is often used to assess the strength of the Anterior Talofibular Ligament and for the instability of the ankle.


Procedure

Patient should be awake and cooperative when the Ankle Drawer test is done.

  1. Patient supine or seated.
  2. Anterior Drawer: Examiner then places his one hand on anterior tibia and the other hand on posterior calcaneus the proceed to pull the foot anteriorly, first with the ankle and then to neutral position (90 degrees)  and with the ankle plantar flexed.
  3. Posterior drawer: Examiner then repeats the procedure above and with the examiner stabilizing the posterior tibia, gripping over the plantar surface of the heel and pushing the foot posteriorly.

Patient supine or seated.
Anterior Drawer: Examiner then places his one hand on anterior tibia and the other hand on posterior calcaneus the proceed to pull the foot anteriorly, first with the ankle and then to neutral position (90 degrees)  and with the ankle plantar flexed.
Posterior drawer: Examiner then repeated the procedure above and with the examiner stabilizing the posterior tibia, gripping over the plantar surface of the heel and pushing the foot posteriorly.

 

Interpretation

Ankle Drawer Test is ideally for patients with an injury of the collateral ligaments.

Positive Ankle Drawer Test

There are two interpretations for Ankle drawer test.

  1. Anterior motion of the foot: Anterior talofibular ligament instability.
  2. Posterior motion of the foot: Posterior ankle ligament instability.

Clinical Notes

The examiner may stabilize the foot on the examination table pull/push the distal tibia anteriorly and posteriorly. And the test produce little to no motion at the ankle joint for normal individuals.