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The attitudes and beliefs of clinicians involved in teaching undergraduate musculoskeletal clinical examination skills

Lookup NU author(s): Dr David Coady, Dr David Walker, Dr Lesley Kay


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The aim of this study was to explore which regional musculokeletal examination skills medical students learn and be examined on. A qualitative research study was undertaken, and six focus groups were formed involving 36 consultants from four chosen specialities. The feeling was that greater emphasis should be placed on the functional assessment of a patient. Students should be able to discern through examination what the patient can and cannot do with his/her affected limb/joint. It was felt that many of the traditional eponymously named special tests (e.g. Thomas' test, Trendelenburg's test) should be dispensed with along with traditional descriptions such as varus, valgus, swan neck and Boutonniere deformities. It was felt these were often a cause of confusion for medical undergraduates. A broad view and diversity in opinions was detected with differences between specialities. The strongest theme to emerge by far was the desire to simplify and standardize the regional examination as much as possible.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Coady D, Walker D, Kay L

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Medical Teacher

Year: 2003

Volume: 25

Issue: 6

Pages: 617-620

ISSN (print): 0142-159X

ISSN (electronic): 1466-187X

Publisher: Informa Healthcare


DOI: 10.1080/0142159031000137454


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