Scalene Cramp test is a cervical spine examination procedure that tests for brachial plexus compression, nerve root irritation, Thoracic Outlet Syndrom (TOS) and irritation of the scalene myofacial trigger point.


Patient should be awake and cooperative during a Scalene Cramp test.

  1. Patient should be seated during the exam.
  2. The patient turns head to the afflicted side and tucks chin into the supraclavicular fossa.
  3. The examiner checks for any sign of discomfort or pain as the pratient assumes the position.

Patient turns head to the afflicted side and tucks chin.


Positive Scalene Cramp Test

There is positive Scalene Cramp test when there is:

  • Increased local pain which indicates scalene myofacial trigger point.
  • Presence of radicular symptoms indicates TOS, brachial plexus compression or nerve root irritation.

Clinical Notes

With scalene trigger point, it is possible to have pain referral along the shoulder and down the arm on the afflicted side.