Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Chovstek Sign - Forget It

This entertaining brief communication refers to Chvostek sign – the twitching of the facial muscles after tapping the facial nerve purportedly associated with hypocalcemia.

This neurologist notes, after one of his residents presented with bilateral Chvostek sign, he convenience sampled other residents and medical students on the wards – and 6 out of 11 exhibited Chvostek sign.  He otherwise notes 25-43% of healthy individuals exhibit this sign and 29% of patients with hypocalcemia do not.  He bluntly states Chvostek sign should simply be retired as a clinically relevant entity.

Stick with the Trousseau sign!

"Chvostek sign, frequently found in healthy subjects, is not a useful clinical sign"

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