Inter-examiner and intra-examiner reliability of the seated flexion test

O'Keefe, Paul (2004) Inter-examiner and intra-examiner reliability of the seated flexion test. Coursework Master thesis, Victoria University.


Motion palpation is widely used in the field of manual medicine despite a lack of research demonstrating its reliability. The seated flexion test is a motion test that has been advocated for the detection of sacroiliac joint dysfunction and has not been examined for reliability. The aim of this study was to determine the inter- and intra-examiner reliability of the seated flexion test, and examine the influence of examiner training on reliability. Ten final year osteopathic students were recruited as examiners. Five of the examiners participated in two training sessions to standardise the testing protocol whilst the remaining five examiners did not participate. The ten examiners performed the test on ten asymptomatic women, three times each. The mean inter-examiner reliability coefficient (k) was 0.105 indicating "slight" agreement, whereas the mean inter-examiner reliability (k) was 0.213, indicating "fair" agreement. Reliability of the trained group was slightly higher for both intra-examiner reliability (k=0.41) and inter-examiner reliability (k=0.14). Examiner training appeared to produce a slight improvement in the inter-examiner and intra-examiner reliability of the seated flexion test. Neither group, however, achieved acceptable reliability for the seated flexion test to be recommended as a useful clinical test. This minor thesis was written by a post-graduate student as part of the requirements of the Master of Health Science (Osteopathy) program.

Item type Thesis (Coursework Master thesis)
Subjects Historical > RFCD Classification > 320000 Medical and Health Sciences
Historical > Faculty/School/Research Centre/Department > School of Biomedical and Health Sciences
Keywords Osteopathy Masters Project, motion palpation, seated flexion test, sacroiliac joint dysfunction, osteopathic treatment
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