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What it measures:

The Arc Sign determines the presence or absence of Achilles tendinopathy. This can be used on anyone with suspected Achilles tendinopathy.

Conditions and Test Variations

This summary contains information on use of this test alone and also in combination with the Palpation test and Royal London Test in patients or clients with suspected Achilles tendinopathy.

Target Population:

People with Achilles tendinopathy

Taskforce Recommendations

This battery of tests have been recommended for diagnosing Achilles tendinopathy by the Orthopedic Section of the American Physical Therapy Association and the Clinical Journal of Sport Medicine. (2)

Clinical Insights

The Arc Sign test is typically performed with the Royal London Hospital test and palpation. This battery of tests is easy and quick to administer in all rehabilitation settings. The Arc Sign is an easy measure to identify the presence of an Achilles tendinopathy.

One physical therapist reported not using the Arc Sign when evaluating Achilles tendinopathy. Instead, the physical therapist uses the Foot Posture Index (FPI), which analyzes the posterior aspect of a patient’s foot and ankle when the patient is standing. The FPI also looks at the Achilles curve, which is the supra and infra lateral malleoli curvature, as seen from behind.

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