Archive for the ‘Sports medicine’ Category

Acute, traumatic knee effusions

February 13, 2009

Diagnostic value of history taking and physical examination to assess effusion of the knee in traumatic knee patients in general practice. Arch Phys Med Rehabil. 2009 Jan;90(1):82-6. PMID: 19154833

In this study of patients with traumatic knee injuries of less than 5 weeks duration, the prevalence of effusion was 31% by magnetic resonance imaging. Almost three quarters of patients with an effusion had meniscal or ligament tear.

The accuracy of ballottement was disappointing: sensitivity and specificity 83% and 49%, respectively. The accuracy of self-reported swelling was similar, with sensitivity and specificity 80% and 45%, respectively.

The negative predictive value of ballottement was 86% for patients in this study with a pretest probability of 31% (click here to adjust the pretest probability).

This study has been added to