The Hoffmann reflex and the Achilles tendon reflex were measured in a group of 194 subjects suspected of having a lumbosacral root compression syndrome. The Achilles tendon reflex was elicited manually with a metal hammer. There was a high correlation between the H-M interval and the Achilles tendon reflex-M interval. The usefulness of the Achilles tendon reflex was evaluated in a selected sub-group of 61 patients with proven L5 or S1 root compression. Neither the H-reflex nor the Achilles tendon reflex appeared to be of any value in detecting L5 root compression. Both the H-reflex and the Achilles tendon reflex proved to be useful for diagnosis of S1 root compression syndromes, the latter being the more sensitive method.
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