Cervical compression test is used to test cervical spine facet joints. It can also be useful in reproducing nerve root compression symptoms in the cervical spine.
- Patient seated
- Examiner gently applies axial downward pressure on patient’s head.
You can increase the maximal compression going through the cervical spine by rotating, laterally flexing and slightly extending the patient’s head.
- Positive Positive Increased local pain: Joint damage, facet lock, meniscoid entrapment or ligament strain.
- Positive Positive Increased peripheral pain: Increased pressure on nerve roots (IVF encroachment, radiculopathy).
With radicular symptoms, further evaluation is warranted (neurologic examination & diagnostic imaging).