Thomas test

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The Thomas test (Hugh Owen Thomas well leg raising test) is a physical examination test, named after Dr. Hugh Owen Thomas (1834-1891), a British orthopaedic surgeon, used to rule out hip flexion contracture.

The patient lies supine on the examination table and brings one knee in direction to the chest/ flexes hip, while the other leg remains extended. The Thomas test is said to be also positive if the patient's

[1] The hip flexion contracture is physiologic in the first 3 months of life and if it is absent in this period it may be a sign of developmental dysplasia of the hip. It is used to identify unilateral fixed flexion deformity of the hip.

The test consists of 3 steps:


  1. ^ Musculoskeletal Examination, 2nd edition (2002), chapter 11, p. 327