Tinel's Sign at Elbow

Original Editor - Tyler Shultz

Top Contributors - Rachael Lowe, Kim Jackson and Tyler Shultz  


Tinel's Sign is the general term for a test in which the therapist identifies an irritated nerve trough a percussive or tapping technique.  At the elbow, Tinel's sign indicates an irritated Ulnar nerve.


The therapist should locate the Ulnar nerve that is seated in the groove between the olecranon process and the medial epicondyle, the Ulnar nerve is then tapped on repeatedly by the index finger of the therapist.  A positive sign is indicated by a tingling sensation in the ulnar distribution of the forearm andhand distal to the tapping point.[1]


  1. Dutton, M. (2008). Orthopaedic: Examination, evaluation, and intervention (2nd ed.). New York: The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.