Assess the passive and contractile components of the cervical spine using manual palpation. It is important to identify the structures and characteristics of the structures. Some characteristics of palpation might include turgor, tension, temperature, tenderness, spasm, inflammation, swelling, rigidity, and flaccidity.
Have the patient placed in a comfortable position - seated, supine or prone, and palpate the tissues of the cervical spine. Work in superficial to deep progression.