Homan's Sign: Useful or Useless? What's your opinion?

  1. Do you perform Homan's sign on all of your patients? Do you find it accurate or not?
    •  
  2. Poll: Is Homan's sign myth or fact in assessing DVT?

    • Yes, I find DVTs using Homan's all the time.

      8.90% 13
    • No, I find most of my DVT patients are not positive for Homan's

      54.11% 79
    • Sometimes. Please discuss.

      28.08% 41
    • Other. Please discuss.

      8.90% 13
    146 Votes
  3. Visit UM Review RN profile page

    About UM Review RN, RN

    Joined: Aug '04; Posts: 9,283; Likes: 4,303

    40 Comments

  4. by   Marie_LPN, RN
    I do it, but i don't find it that acurate. My own personal experience plays in that. If i do the Homan's sign, i instantly get a cramp, so of course i yell "ow".
  5. by   UM Review RN
    Quote from Marie_LPN
    I do it, but i don't find it that acurate. My own personal experience plays in that. If i do the Homan's sign, i instantly get a cramp, so of course i yell "ow".
    Me too, Marie! That's why I asked! :chuckle Also, we have all these geriatric patients who are not so limber and I get a lot of them telling me dorsiflexion hurts or gives them leg cramps, so I don't find it very helpful.
  6. by   jimthorp
    I believe it is contraindicated in the geriatric patient. I don't use it on them.
  7. by   GooeyRN
    I check most of my patients using the homan's sign so I can chart that I did it and the responce to cover my butt, but I don't really see much value in it.
  8. by   SharonH, RN
    I would have to say useless. According to the literature, the Homan's sign is only positive in DVT patients only 50% of the time and in my personal practice, I would say it is less than that. Also, there are other indicators of DVT which are more reliable such as pain, swelling and redness and personal history.
  9. by   RENAISSANCE RN
    we are supposed to use it, but I have read and heard from MD's that it could dislodge a clot?? Any care to elaborate
  10. by   fla orange
    Last semester I learn that the homans sign was useless, that most DVT are present with increase pain, warmth and numbness. I work on a rehab unit(CVA, Neuro, ortho) and when pt. c/o pain, tenderness and warmth. If I do the homans sign I know there going to holler out.
  11. by   maolin
    I didn't have a +Homan's with my DVT. I did have pain (8/10), massive swelling, discoloration.
  12. by   Chaya
    I do it religiously cause it looks good on paper but in my experience no-one I've ever had a positive respose from has had a DVT while no-one with a DVT has had a positive response.
  13. by   crb613
    We are being taught not to use Homans....unrealiable, can dislodge clot. Instead look for pain, t-ness, swelling, redness, discoloration ect.
  14. by   HappyNurse2005
    Had a 95 year old lady hospitalized for renal failure. Had CHF, so had some edema. Her overprotective daughters swore they thought she had a DVT. one leg looked more swollen than the other. (they said)
    Not warm, not painful, negative Homan's. She had a huge DVT from the top of her leg to the bottom.
  15. by   NurseLatteDNP
    Quote from FutureRNTerri
    we are supposed to use it, but I have read and heard from MD's that it could dislodge a clot?? Any care to elaborate
    They have told us in nursing school last semester that we are not allowed to do it for the same reason you just explained.

close