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Femoral Nerve Tension Test

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Other Names

  • Prone Knee Bending Test
  • Femoral Nerve Stretch Test
  • Mackiewicz sign
  • Crossed Femoral Nerve Tension Test (FNST)
  • Crossed Femoral Nerve Stretch Test


Femoral Nerve Tension Test[1]
  • Evaluate the Femoral Nerve and the mid lumbar (L2-L4) nerve roots


  • The patient lays prone on the examination table
  • The examiner stabilizes the ipsilateral pelvis with one hand to prevent movement
  • The other hand flexes the knee as much as possible and holds the maximal flexion position for 45 seconds
  • Positive test
    • Reproduction of the patients symptoms
  • Be sure to compare to unaffected limb


  • Crossed FNST
    • Patient remains prone
    • Hip extended, knee flexed
    • Passively pull contralateral knee posteriorly, stretching thigh neuromusculature of both sides
    • Positive test is pain in contralateral anterior thigh
      • Due to stretching of the psoas/quads/lumbar disc impinging on femoral nerve roots (L2 L4 distribution)



  • Unknown

See Also


  1. Davenport, D., H. B. Colaco, and V. Kavarthapu. "Examination of the adult spine." British Journal of Hospital Medicine 76.12 (2015): C182-C185.
Created by:
John Kiel on 25 July 2019 13:19:33
Last edited:
29 March 2023 18:21:03