Knee Exam

Popliteal Pulse



    • How to Measure

    • Bend the patient's knee to 90 degrees, gently grasp both sides of the knee joint and palpate within the popliteal fossa posteriorly.
    • Causes of Absent Pulse

    • Trauma
    • Atherosclerosis
    • Abdominal aortic aneurysm
    • Shock
Want more info like this?
  • Your electronic clinical medicine handbook
  • Guides to help pass your exams
  • Tools every medical student needs
  • Quick diagrams to have the answers, fast
  • Quizzes to test your knowledge


 Browne K, Kurtz CA. How to Perform a Comprehensive Examination of the Knee. JAAPA. 2009 Jun; 22(6): 20-25. Chatra PS. Bursae around the knee joints. Indian Journal of Radiology and Imaging. 2012; 22(1): 27-30. Couture JF, Al-Juhani W, Forsythe ME, Lenczner E, Marien R, Burman M. Joint Line Fullness and Menisceal Pathology. Sprts Health. 2012 Jan; 4(1): 47-50. Davis GJ, Malone T, Bassett FH. Knee Examination. Phys Ther. 1980; 60: 1565-1574. Espandar R, Mortazavi SMJ, Baghdadi T. Angular Deformities of the Lower Limb in Children. Asian Journal of Sports Medicine. 2010 Mar; 1(1): 46-53. Fritschy D, Fasel J, Imbert JC, Bianchi S, Verdonk R, Wirth CJ. The Popliteal Cyst. Knee Surg Sports Traumatol Arthrosc. 2006; 14: 623-628. Gupte C, St Mart JP. The Acute Swollen Knee: Diagnosis and Management. Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine. 2013; 106: 259-268. Johnson MW. Acute knee effusions: a systematic approach to diagnosis. American family physician. 2000 Apr;61(8):2391-400. Kastelein M, Luijusterburg PA, Wagemakers HP, Bansraj SC, Berger MY, Koes BW, Bierma-Zeinstra SM. 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: 82-86. Loudon JK, Goist HL, Loudon KL. Genu Recurvatum Syndrome. JOSPT. 1998 May; 27(5): 361-367. Malanga GA, Andrus S, Nadler SF, McLean J. Physical examination of the knee: a review of the original test description and scientific validity of common orthopaedic tests. Arch Phys Med Rehabil. 2003; 84: 592-603. Rose REC. The Accuract of Joint Line Tenderness in the Diagnosis of Menisceal Tears. The West Indian Medical Journal. 2006; 55(5): 323. Stratford PW, Binkley J. A Review of the McMurray Test: Definition, Interpretation, and Clinical Usefulness. The Journal of Orthopaedic and Sports Physical Therapy. 1995 Sept; 22(3): 116-120. Tofts LJ, Elliot EJ, Munns C, Pacey V, Sillence DO. The Differential Diagnosis of Children with Joint Hypermobility: a Review of the Literature. Pediatric Rheumatology. 2009; 7(1). Zarins B, Rowe CR, Harris BA, Watkins MP. Rotational Motion of the Knee. Am J Sports Med. 1983 June; 11(3): 152-156.