Functional sensibility assessment. Part II: Effects of sensory improvement on precise pinch force modulation after transverse carpal tunnel release

Hsiu Yun Hsu, Li Chieh Kuo, Haw Yen Chiu, I. Ming Jou, Fong Chin Su

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Patients with median nerve compression at the carpal tunnel often have poor sensory afferents. Without adequate sensory modulation control, these patients frequently exhibit clumsy performance and excessive force output in the affected hand. We analyzed precision grip function after the sensory recovery of patients with carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS)whounderwent carpal tunnel release (CTR). ThirteenCTS patients were evaluated using a custom-designed pinch device and conventional sensory tools before and afterCTRto measure sensibility, maximumpinch strength, and anticipated pinch force adjustments to movement-induced load fluctuations in a pinch-holding-up activity. Based on these tests, five force-related parameters and sensory measurements were used to determine improvements in pinch performance after sensory recovery. The force ratio between the exerted pinch force and maximumload force of the lifting object was used to determine pinch force coordination and to prove that CTR enabled precision motor output. The magnitude of peak pinch force indicated an economic force output during manipulations following CTR. The peak pinch force, force ratio, and percentage of maximum pinch force also demonstrated a moderate correlation with the Semmes-Weinstein test. Analysis of these tests revealed that improved sensory function helped restore patients' performance in precise pinch force control evaluations. These results suggest that sensory information plays an important role in adjusting balanced force output in dexterous manipulation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1534-1539
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Orthopaedic Research
Volume27
Issue number11
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2009 Nov

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine

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