Purpose: To assess mobility limitation in the sacroiliac region.
Test Position: Standing.
Performing the Test: The examiner palpates the inferior aspect of the PSIS of the tested side with one hand and the S2 spinous process with the other. The patient flexes the hip past 90 degrees. The examiner should feel the PSIS move inferiorly and laterally relative to the sacrum. A positive test is when this motion is absent. The examiner should then compare this to the opposite side. An alternate method for this test is to palpate both PSIS's at the same time and compare the end position.
Diagnostic Accuracy: Kappa (at best) = .081 ("Intraexaminer and Interexaminer of the Gillet Test"; the Gillet test has extremely low reliability) Sensitivity: .08; Specificity: .93 ("Four clinical tests of sacroiliac joint dysfunction: the association of tests results with innominate torsion among patients with and without back pain").
Importance of Test: It is a debatable topic as to whether there is motion occurring at the SI joint. This test is used to determine if restrictions are present in the sacroiliac joint. With flexion of the tested leg past 90 degrees, the structures on the posterior side of the pelvis become taught and rotate the inominate in a posterior direction relative to the sacrum, which is why the PSIS should be felt moving inferiorly and laterally. With restrictions in the SI joint, the inominate is unable to move relative to the sacrum. It should be noted that abnormal SI motion can be found in asymptomatic patients, so this test should not be used to triangulate the origin of the patient's symptoms.
Note: tests should only be performed by a properly trained health care practitioner.
References: Levangie PK. "Four clinical tests of sacroiliac joint dysfunction: the association of test results with innominate torsion among patients with and without back pain." Phys Ther. 1999 Nov;79(11):1043-57. Web. 08/19/2012.