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The popliteal angle tests in patients with cerebral palsy

Manikowska, Faustynaa; Chen, Brian Po-Junga; Jóźwiak, Mareka; Lebiedowska, Maria K.a,b

Journal of Pediatric Orthopaedics B: July 2019 - Volume 28 - Issue 4 - p 332–336
doi: 10.1097/BPB.0000000000000579

The aims were to determine during the popliteal angle (PA) tests whether particular knee muscles are activated and whether the position of pelvis affects the level of muscles activation. Twenty-two patients with cerebral palsy were recruited (age: 14±4.94 years). Knee muscle activities and range of motion were measured during PA. Knee flexors were active during tests, with fivefold increase of activation of ipsilateral hamstring. Higher and more frequent activation of muscles only in the contralateral limb was seen. Muscles activation should be considered as a confounding factor during tests. PA should not be relied upon as a major criterion for the treatment selection in cerebral palsy.

aDepartment of Pediatric Orthopedics and Traumatology, Poznań University of Medical Sciences

bFaculty of Physics, Adam Mickiewicz University, Poznań, Poland

Correspondence to Brian Po-Jung Chen, PT, MD, Department of Pediatric Orthopedics and Traumatology, Poznań University of Medical Sciences, ul. 28 Czerwca 1956r. nr 135/147, 61-545 Poznań, Poland Tel: +48 618 310 360; fax: +48 618 310 173; e-mail:

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