Feasibility of a Novel Functional Sensibility Test as an Assisted Examination for Determining Precision Pinch Performance in Patients with Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

Hsiu Yun Hsu, Li Chieh Kuo, Yao Lung Kuo, Haw Yen Chiu, I. Ming Jou, Po Ting Wu, Fong Chin Su

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6 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

To understand the feasibility of a novel functional sensibility test for determining precision pinch performance in patients with carpal tunnel syndrome, this study investigates the validity, sensitivity and specificity of functional sensibility derived from a pinch-holding-up activity (PHUA) test. Participants include 70 clinically defined carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS) patients with 119 involved hands and 70 age- and gender-matched controls. To examine the discriminating ability of the functional sensibility test, the differences in the ability of pinch force adjustments to the inertial load of handling object between CTS and control subjects are analyzed. The results of functional sensibility are correlated with the severity of CTS to establish concurrent validity. The receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve is constructed to demonstrate the accuracy of the proposed test. The functional sensibility score significantly discriminates the patients and control groups (respectively, 12.94±1.72 vs. 11.51±1.15N in peak pinch force (FPPeak), p<0.001; 2.92±0.41 vs. 2.52±0.24 in force ratio, p<0.001) and is moderately correlated (r = 0.42-0.54, p<0.001) with the results of traditional sensibility tests (touch-pressure threshold and two-point discrimination test). In addition, there is a statistical difference in the results of functional sensibility (p<0.001) among the subgroups of CTS severity based on electrophysiological study. The sensitivity and specificity are 0.79 and 0.76, respectively, for the functional sensibility test. The areas under the ROC curve are 0.85 and 0.80 for the force ratio and FPPeak, respectively. In conclusion, the functional sensibility test could be feasibly used as a clinical tool for determining both the sensibility and precision pinch performance of hands for the patients with CTS.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere72064
JournalPloS one
Volume8
Issue number8
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2013 Aug 20

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)
  • General

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