Speed's Test - Physical Therapy

Speed's Test was originally designed to assess for pathology of the long head of biceps in its groove but has also been utilised in the assessment for SLAP.

    Purpose of Test

    To assess the integrity of biceps tendon or labrum.

    Test Position

    Sitting or standing.

    Performing the Test

    Start with the patient’s arm in 90 degrees of shoulder flexion. 

    Have the patient resist a movement into extension, a first time supinated and a second time with the arm pronated. A positive test is considered if there is significantly greater pain in the bicipital groove with the arm supinated.

    Diagnostic Accuracy

    Sensitivity: 90; Specificity: 13.8

    Importance of Test

    Speed’s Test can be used to assess both the Bicep’s tendon or a SLAP tear. The patient experiences greater pain with the arm supinated due to the increased eccentric stress placed across the bicep's tendon. Patients may still report pain with the arm in pronation, but the severity of pain will be less. Remember, the long head of the biceps attaches to the supraglenoid tubercle and can recreate labral related pain as well.