Percussion is a method of tapping body parts with fingers, hands, or small instruments as part of a physical examination. It is done to determine:
Percussion of a body part produces a sound, like playing a drum. The sound is a sign of the type of tissue within the body part or organ.
Swartz MH, Swartz TH. The physical examination. In: Swartz MH, ed. Textbook of Physical Diagnosis: History and Examination. 8th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2021:chap 6.BACK TO TOP
Review Date: 1/16/2021
Reviewed By: Linda J. Vorvick, MD, Clinical Associate Professor, Department of Family Medicine, UW Medicine, School of Medicine, University of Washington, Seattle, WA. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, Brenda Conaway, Editorial Director, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.
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