Homans Sign Tests

Learn about the Homans Sign Test and its uses, and download a free PDF template for easy implementation and evaluation of patients with suspected DVT.

By Audrey Liz Perez on May 15, 2024.

Fact Checked by Ericka Pingol.

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What is a Homans Sign?

Homans Sign is a physical examination technique to screen patients for deep vein thrombosis (DVT).

DVT is a condition where a blood clot forms in the deep veins, commonly in the legs. The Homans Sign Test involves dorsiflexing the patient's foot and applying pressure on the calf muscle to assess if the maneuver elicits pain, which may suggest DVT.

was once a widely used diagnostic tool for DVT, but its limitations have led to a shift towards more reliable methods. However, the test still holds value as an initial screening tool in settings where advanced diagnostic equipment may not be readily available.

Additionally, the Homans Sign Test can be useful for educating patients about the signs and symptoms of DVT, as well as for healthcare professionals to better understand the patient's condition before proceeding with further diagnostic testing.

While the Homans Sign Test is no longer considered a gold standard for DVT diagnosis, it can still play a role in the initial evaluation of patients with suspected DVT.

Printable Homans Sign Test

Download this Homans Sign Test to screen patients for deep vein thrombosis (DVT).

How does this printable Homans Sign Test work?

This printable Homans Sign Test is a template that healthcare professionals can use to document and evaluate patients for the presence of DVT using the Homans Sign Test. The template can be downloaded as a PDF file and printed easily.

Step 1 

Download and print the Homans Sign Test PDF template.

Step 2

Record the patient's personal information, including name, age, and medical history.

Step 3

Perform the Homans Sign Test following the steps detailed in the template.

Step 4

Document the patient's response to the test (positive or negative Homans Sign) and any relevant observations.

Step 5

Based on the test results, determine the next action, such as further diagnostic tests or referral to a specialist.

Scoring

The Homans Sign Test scoring is binary: a positive or negative result. A positive Homans Sign is indicated by pain in the calf when performing the test, suggesting potential DVT. A negative Homans Sign means no pain is elicited, and DVT is less likely. 

However, additional diagnostic methods should be used to confirm or rule out DVT due to the test's limitations.

Homans Sign example (sample)

We have provided a sample template to guide you using the Homans Sign Test. This example demonstrates the objectives and instructions on documenting and evaluating a patient for potential DVT using the Homans Sign Test template.

Download this Homans Sign Test Example (Sample) here:

Homans Sign example (sample)

When to use these Homans Tests?

The Homans Test can be an initial screening tool for deep vein thrombosis (DVT) in various clinical settings. Healthcare professionals may consider using the test when a patient presents with signs and symptoms suggestive of DVT. These symptoms can include:

Unilateral leg pain

Pain localized to one leg and often aggravated by standing or walking.

Swelling

Noticeable swelling in one leg, which a feeling of tightness or fullness may accompany.

Warmth

Increased warmth over the affected area compared to the other leg.

Redness or discoloration

The skin over the affected area may appear reddish, purplish, or bluish due to changes in blood flow.

Superficial vein distention

The superficial veins may become more visible or distended due to increased pressure in the deep venous system.

Healthcare professionals should use the Homans Test with other diagnostic tests and clinical evaluations as a preliminary assessment tool.

When a patient exhibits symptoms suggestive of DVT, and the Homans Test is positive, further diagnostic tests are recommended for accurate evaluation. These additional tests may include:

  • Doppler ultrasound: A noninvasive imaging technique that uses sound waves to visualize blood flow in the deep veins and detect potential blood clots.
  • Venography: An invasive imaging procedure where a contrast dye is injected into the vein, followed by X-ray imaging to visualize blood flow and detect any obstructions.
  • D-dimer blood test: A blood test that measures the presence of D-dimer, a protein fragment produced when a blood clot dissolves. Elevated D-dimer levels can indicate the presence of a clot, but further testing is required for confirmation.

Benefits of using free Homans Sign Test Templates

The use of free Homans Sign Test templates offers several advantages for healthcare professionals when evaluating patients for potential DVT. 

These templates simplify the documentation process and promote effective communication within the healthcare team. Here's a more detailed look at the benefits of using these templates:

Streamlines the documentation process during patient evaluation.

The Homans Sign Test templates provide a systematic and organized way to record patient information and test results, making it easier for healthcare providers to keep track of relevant details during the assessment process.

Provides a standardized format for conducting the Homans Sign Test.

Utilizing a consistent template ensures that the test is performed and documented uniformly across different healthcare settings, promoting accurate comparisons and evaluations of patient results.

Improves communication among healthcare team members.

With a clear and easy-to-understand format, the Homans Sign Test templates facilitate better communication among healthcare team members, ensuring everyone is on the same page when interpreting test results and planning patient care.

Facilitates patient education and understanding of the test.

A well-structured template can help healthcare professionals explain the Homans Sign Test and its implications to patients, fostering better patient comprehension and involvement in their care.

Can be easily integrated into existing medical record systems.

The Homans Sign Test templates are designed to be compatible with a variety of medical record systems, allowing healthcare professionals to incorporate the test results seamlessly into patients' medical histories for future reference and follow-up care.

Why use this Homans Sign app?

The Homans Sign app by Carepatron offers an efficient and user-friendly platform for healthcare professionals to conduct, document, and evaluate the Homans Sign Test. By utilizing this app, practitioners can:

  • Save time and resources with a digital, easily accessible format.
  • Enhance collaboration and communication within the healthcare team.
  • Facilitate accurate and timely diagnosis of patients with suspected DVT.
  • Seamlessly integrate with other diagnostic tools and electronic medical records.
  • Access up-to-date resources and guidelines related to DVT diagnosis and management.
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Who created the Homans Sign Test?
Who created the Homans Sign Test?

Commonly asked questions

Who created the Homans Sign Test?

The Homans Sign Test was developed by Dr. John Homans, an American surgeon, in the early 20th century to screen for deep vein thrombosis (DVT).

How to score the Homans Sign Test?

The Homans Sign Test is scored as positive or negative. A positive Homans Sign is indicated by pain in the calf during the test, suggesting potential DVT. A negative Homans Sign means no pain is elicited, and DVT is less likely.

What does the Homans Sign Test for?

The Homans Sign Test is used to screen for deep vein thrombosis (DVT) in patients. It assesses if the pain is elicited in the calf when the foot is dorsiflexed and pressure is applied to the calf muscle, which may suggest DVT.

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