With the patient lying on his/her back, the surgeon grasps the femur in one hand above the joint - with the thumb above the patella and the fingers behind the femur, while the other hand grasps the tibia in a corresponding position below the patella. The surgeon pulls the tibia forward in relation to the femur, assessing the degree of laxity of the femur and tibia in relation to one another.
These YouTube videos demonstrate the Lachman test in two different knees. The first video shows modest laxity and the second extreme laxity -
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