Tripod sign for back pain

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In evaluating the patient with low back pain, don't forget the tripod sign. If the leg of a seated patient is raised 45°-60°, he should use his arms to brace himself. Patients seeking drugs usually just sit there unless they have been coached by someone else to use their arms to support themselves.
—Sheryl Lavender, DO, Delray Beach, Fla. (105-24)

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