ACL Assessment

Two tests which are used to assess the knee to determine if there has been damage to the anterior cruciate ligament, the anterior draw test and Lachman's test.

The following information and video is for information purposes only. We advise seeking professional advice if you suspect an anterior cruciate ligament injury.

Anterior draw test

LachmansWith the patient laying on their back with the injured knee bent to 90 degrees and the foot flat on the table. The practitioner may stabilize the foot by sitting on it.The practitioner will grasp the upper Tibia (shin bone) with both hands. They will then attempt to pull the Tibia forwards, towards them. A positive result is if the Tibia moves excessively forwards.The injured knee should always be compared to the healthy knee for 'normal' movement.

Lachman's test

Lachmans test for acl injuryThe patient lies on their back with the knee flexed between 15 and 30 degrees. The practitioner grips the outside of the lower femur or thigh bone with the upper hand and the inside of the upper Tibia with the lower hand. The femur is stabilised with the upper hand as the lower hand applies an anterior force on the tibia. A positive result is found if the tibia moves excessively forward compared to the healthy knee.

As well as the tests described above, the practitioner may also test the range of motion at the joint, the strength of the surrounding muscles, and test for associated injuries such as meniscus tears.