A screening test for thyroid function

Aust Fam Physician. 1976 May;5(4):550-9, 561.


The Achilles tendon reflex half relaxation time measurement (ART) has been used by many physicians both as a diagnostic test and for the assessment of progress in thyroid gland malfunction. Reference is made to some results obtained in Melbourne and in other countries using different methods of measurement of the ART for these purposes. In a series of 2064 patients referred to the Shepherd Foundation Centre, the Achilles tendon reflex half relaxation time was measured by means of the SMI Reflexometer and a comparison was made in each case with a laboratory estimation of the T3 resin uptake and T4 total thyroxine iodine and the Free Thyroxine Index (FTI). Reference is made to a survey conducted among referring doctors where opinions were sought as to the clinical usefulness of different tests including the Achilles tendon reflex time measurement.

MeSH terms

  • Achilles Tendon / physiology*
  • Humans
  • Reflex, Stretch*
  • Thyroid Function Tests / methods