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.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Orthopedics and Sports Medicine