Purpose of Test: To test for the presence of neural or vascular compromise in the thoracic outlet.
Test position: Standing.
Performing the Test: Have the patient abduct each shoulder to 90 degrees with the shoulders laterally rotated and the elbows flexed slightly behind the frontal plane. Instruct the patient to open and close their hands slowly for 3 minutes. A positive test is reported if the patient is unable to keep their arms in the starting position for 3 minutes or if ischemic pain, heaviness, or weakness is present in the arm or if the patient reports numbness or tingling in the hand during the test.
Diagnostic Accuracy: Unknown.
Importance of the Test: Thoracic outlet syndrome (TOS) is a group of disorders that occur when the neurovascular bundle in the thoracic outlet becomes compromised. Patients with TOS often complain of pain or weakness with overhead activities. This is due to a narrowing of the space between the first rib and clavicle, compressing the structures that pass through the thoracic outlet. Because Roos Test involves repetitive motion above the head, a patient with thoracic outlet syndrome will often struggle while performing this test. While the diagnostic accuracy is unknown, due to the duration of the test, we suspect there are many false-positives while performing this maneuver.
Note: these tests should only be performed by properly trained health care practitioners.