Vertebral Artery Test

CAUTIONS!

Purpose: 

Test for the integrity of the vertebral arteries

Test procedure:

• The patient is in the supine position
• The examiner stands at the head end of the patient
• The patient is assisted to extend the cervical spine to end of range.
Following this, the upper cervical joints are taken into side bending and rotation to the same side.
This position is held for up to 30 seconds or until symptoms appear and this case it is stopped.
• Observe the patient’s eyes for nystagmus.

 

Test findings:

Positive if symptoms include vertigo, nystagmus, visual disturbances and light-headedness.

Signifies vertebrobasilar arterial insufficiency.