Exam Table

Examination tables are medical equipment used by the doctors in medical facilities, offices, and hospitals to support the physical examination of the patients. According to the construct and functionality, examination tables are generally classified into two types: Procedure/Exam tables and Treatment tables.

Procedure/Exam Tables

Procedure/Exam tables are diagnostic instruments that help in the execution of medical examination by providing patients the comfort of laying either in a seated or reclining position.

A seated position in medical examination refers to a 45 degree to 60-degree angle position of the diagnostic chair’s backrest with the allowance of patients’ knees being either bent or straight.

A reclining position, on the other hand, refers to patients lying on the back in a relaxed way on the procedure/exam tables with their legs flexed and thighs at a 90-degree angle to their abdomen.

No matter which position needs to be assumed, procedure/exam tables can be adjusted according to the needs of the medical procedure with the help if their articulating backrests.

Additionally, according to their nature of the operation, construct and functionality exam tables can be broken into further two categories. These are (1) Power exam tables and (2) Manual exam tables.

Power exam tables have electronic motors installed in them which help in the adjustment of the table and its parts as per patients’ disabilities and diagnostic requirements.

Manual exam tables on the other hand, need to be adjusted with a manual button or lever attached at the surface of the diagnostic tables. They do not consist of any kinds of electronically powered motors installed.

treatment table

Treatment Tables

Treatment tables are the simplest version of examination tables. They are most commonly found in massage centers, physical therapy facilities, first-aid medical facilities, nurse rooms in schools and any such place where the most basic form of medical aid is given to patients in times of need. Treatment tables, as opposed to procedure/exam tables, are completely different in their construct.

Treatment tables have a padded, flat table-top construct and generally, they do not support patients in either seated or reclined position. However, some treatment tables allow room for the table to be adjusted to a reclined position for the patients, though many of them do not have this ability.

Treatment tables support a flat medical examination procedure. Moreover, sometimes they are covered with rolls of paper before a patient sits on the table for examination. After examination, the paper is discarded and a new sheet of paper is laid for the next patient.

Since these tables are used for the most basic types of examinations, their height is fixed in most cases and they do not have any features related to operation (manual or power). However, some treatment tables do come with the adjustment feature which is powered by an electric motor or a hydraulic crank.

Additionally, the base of treatment tables can be made out of any material be it wood, particleboard or metal. Last but not least, treatment tables do come with drawers and shelves for storing medical tools under the base of the table.


Thus, the main differences between both types of examination tables lie in their construct and purpose served.

To sum it up, procedure/exam tables are used for more complicated operations and medical examinations than treatment tables. Procedure/ exam tables are also disabled-person-friendly. Treatment tables are not such a good option for handicapped people since these tables are downright flat and cannot support or provide help to the handicapped person in any way.