Reliability of shoulder internal rotation passive range of motion measurements in the supine versus sidelying position.

The objective of tis study was to compare intrarater and interrater reliability of shoulder internal rotation (IR) passive range of motion measurements utilizing a standard supine position and a sidelying position. Glenohumeral IR range of motion deficits are often noted in patients with shoulder pathology. Excellent intrarater reliability has been found when measuring this motion. However, interrater reliability has been reported as poor to fair. Some clinicians currently use a sidelying position for IR stretching with patients who have shoulder pathology. However, no objective data exist for IR passive range of motion measured in this sidelying position, either in terms of reliability or normative values. Seventy subjects (mean age, 36.8 years), with (n = 19) and without (n = 51) shoulder pathology, were included in this study. Shoulder IR passive range of motion of the dominant shoulder or involved shoulder was measured by 2 investigators in 2 positions: (1) a standard supine position, with the shoulder at 90 degrees of abduction, and (2) in sidelying on the tested side, with the shoulder flexed to 90 degrees . Intrarater reliability for supine measurements was good to excellent (ICC3,1 = 0.70-0.93) and for sidelying measurements was excellent (ICC3,1 = 0.94-0.98). Interrater reliability was fair to good for the supine measurement (ICC2,2 = 0.74-0.81) and good to excellent for the sidelying measurement (ICC2,2 = 0.88-0.96). The mean (range) value of the dominant shoulder sidelying IR passive range of motion was 40 degrees (11 degrees to 69 degrees ) for healthy subjects and 25 degrees (-16 degrees to 49 degrees ) for subjects with shoulder pathology.

For subjects with shoulder pathology, measurements of shoulder IR made in the sidelying position had superior intrarater and interrater reliability compared to those in the standard supine position.

Lunden JB, Muffenbier M, Giveans MR, Cieminski CJ. Reliability of shoulder internal rotation passive range of motion measurements in the supine versus sidelying position. J Orthop Sports Phys Ther. 2010 Sep;40(9):589-94

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