Introduction
Abnormal movement
Posture
Muscle bulk
Tone
Power
Co-ordination
Reflexes




Power
Examination Technique:

  • power or strength is tested by comparing the patient’s strength against your own.

  • start proximally and move distally.

  • compare one side to the other.

  • grade strength using the Medical Research Council (MRC) scale.
MRC Scale
Grade Description
0 no contraction
1 flicker or trace of contraction
2 active movement with gravity eliminated
3 active movement against gravity
4* active movement against gravity and resistance
5 normal power

* grades 4 -, 4 and 4+ maybe used to indicate movement against slight, moderate and strong resistance respectively

Link to muscle action and innervation chart

  • where possible, palpate the muscle as the patient activates it.

  • strength in the lower extremities is best assessed with the patient supine.