Hoffmann sign

Hoff·mann sign

(hof'mahn),
1. in latent tetany mild mechanical stimulation of the trigeminal nerve causes severe pain;
2. flexion of the terminal phalanx of the thumb and of the second and third phalanges of one or more of the fingers when the volar surface of the terminal phalanx of the fingers is flicked. Synonym(s): digital reflex, Hoffmann reflex, snapping reflex

Hoffmann sign

(1) A rarely invoked clinical sign referring to the pain caused by trigeminal region pressure in patients with tetany. 
(2) A clinical sign of a pyramidal tract lesion, which consists of flexion of the thumb or finger(s), flexion of all fingers and thumb (Trömner sign) or flexion of toes (Rossolimo sign).

Hoffmann sign

Digital reflex, Hoffmann reflex Neurology A clinical finding in hemiplegia in which the tips of the fingers are nipped and the thumb and finger undergo a reflex flexing. See Hemiplegia.

Hoff·mann sign

, Hoffmann reflex (hawf'mahn sīn, rē'fleks)
1. In latent tetany, mild mechanical stimulation of the trigeminal nerve causes severe pain.
2. Flexion of the terminal phalanx of the thumb and of the second and third phalanges of one or more of the fingers when the volar surface of the terminal phalanx of the fingers is flicked.
Synonym(s): digital reflex.

Hoffmann,

Johann, German neurologist, 1857-1919.
Hoffmann muscular atrophy - progressive dysfunction of the anterior horn cells in the spinal cord and brainstem cranial nerves. Synonym(s): infantile spinal muscular atrophy
Hoffmann phenomenon - excessive irritability of the sensory nerves to electrical or mechanical stimuli in tetany.
Hoffmann reflex - Synonym(s): Hoffmann sign
Hoffmann sign - in latent tetany, mild mechanical stimulation of the trigeminal nerve causes severe pain. Synonym(s): Hoffmann reflex
Werdnig-Hoffmann disease - Synonym(s): Werdnig-Hoffmann muscular atrophy
Werdnig-Hoffmann muscular atrophy - see under Werdnig
References in periodicals archive ?
Historically, clinicians have used tests and measures such as ankle clonus, Babinski sign, hyperreflexia, and the Hoffmann sign to screen for cervical myelopathy.
Subsequently, Cook et al (6) examined the reliability and sensitivity of 7 clinical tests: Babinski sign, clonus, Hoffmann sign, inverted supinator sign, hand withdrawal reflex, suprapatellar quadriceps reflex, and upper extremity deep tendon reflexes.
This study found that selected combinations of clinical findings that consisted of (1) gait deviation, (2) positive Hoffmann sign, (3) inverted supinator sign, (4) positive Babinski sign, and (5) patients older than 45 years were effective in ruling out and ruling in cervical spine myelopathy.
They reported the most sensitive test was an exaggerated patellar tendon reflex (94%), followed by the Hoffmann sign (81%), Babinski sign (53%), and ankle clonus (35%).
Houten and Noce (16) retrospectively reported the prevalence of the Hoffmann sign (68%), Babinski sign (33%) and hyperreflexia (60%) in 225 patients who underwent surgery for CSM.
Therefore, the presence of a positive Hoffmann sign in asymptomatic patients strongly suggests underlying cervical pathology.
While the Hoffmann sign appears to be very sensitive for detecting cord compression, Chang et al (19) reported the Tromner sign to be a more effective method of detecting CSM.
Additionally, the Hoffmann sign appears to be especially sensitive in earlier stages of cervical myelopathy.