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Kernig's sign

Last reviewed dd mmm yyyy. Last edited dd mmm yyyy

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Kernig's sign should be tested for if meningitis is suspected.

Each hip is flexed in turn, and then attempt to straighten the knee while keeping the hip flexed.

In a meningitis, this movement is greatly limited by spasm of hamstrings - which in turn causes pain - due to inflammatory exudates around the roots of the lumbar theca.

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