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Special Test

Hand Dexterity Tests

Hand Dexterity Tests are a group of tests that is used to evaluate the accuracy fine motor of the hand and fingers.

See Also: Hand Muscular Strength Test

What are the Hand Dexterity Tests?

The Hand Dexterity tests include the following:

Minnesota Manual Dexterity Test:

Minnesota Manual Dexterity Test which primarily measures gross coordination and dexterity, consists of following five functions:

  1. Placing
  2. Turning
  3. Displacing
  4. One-hand turning and placing
  5. Two-hand turning and placing

The activities are timed and compared with the time taken by the other hand and then compared with normal values.

Minnesota Manual Dexterity Test tools
Minnesota Manual Dexterity Test tools

Jebsen–Taylor Hand-Function Test:

Jebsen–Taylor Hand-Function Test which requires the least amount of extremity coordination, measures prehension and manipulative skills and consists of following seven subtests:

  1. Writing
  2. Card turning
  3. Picking up small objects
  4. Simulated feeding
  5. Stacking
  6. Picking up large, light objects
  7. Picking up large, heavy objects.

The subtests are timed and compared with the time taken by the other hand. The results are also compared with normal values.

See Also: Froment's Sign
Jebsen–Taylor Hand-Function Test tools
Jebsen–Taylor Hand-Function Test tools

Nine-Hole Peg Test:

This test was designed to assess finger dexterity of each hand. The patient is asked to use one hand to place nine 3.2-cm (1.3-inch) pegs in a 12.7 by 12.7 cm (5 by 5 in.) board and is then asked to remove them.

The task is timed and compared with the time taken by the other hand.

The results are compared with normal values.

Nine-Hole Peg Test tool
Nine-Hole Peg Test tool

Purdue Pegboard Test:

This test evaluates finer coordination, requiring prehension of small objects, with measurement categories divided into:

  1. right hand
  2. left hand
  3. both hands
  4. right, left, and both hands
  5. assembly.

The subtests are timed and compared with normal values based on gender and occupation.

Purdue Pegboard Test tool
Purdue Pegboard Test tool

Crawford Small Parts Dexterity Test:

This test involves the use of tweezers and a screwdriver and requires patients to control not only their hands but also small tools. This test correlates positively with vocational activities that demand fine coordination skills.

The problem with most of these tests and others is that the critical measure of function used is time, even though time is not an accurate measure of function. Although not standardized, a few other simple tests can be used to assess hand dexterity. These include writing in a straight line, buttoning and unbuttoning different-sized buttons, and zipping and unzipping using a variety of zipper sizes.

The following scale can be used to grade these activities:

  • Unable to perform task = 0.
  • Able to complete task partially = 1.
  • Able to complete task but with difficulty = 2.
  • Able to perform task normally = 3.
Crawford Small Parts Dexterity Test tool
Crawford Small Parts Dexterity Test tool

Hand Disability Index

The patient is asked to rate the following seven questions on a scale of zero to three, with three being the most difficult.

  • Unable to perform task = 0
  • Able to complete task partially = 1
  • Able to complete task but with difficulty = 2
  • Able to perform task normally = 3

Are you able to do the following:

  1. Dress yourself, including tying shoelaces and doing buttons?
  2. Cut your meat?
  3. Lift a full cup or glass to your mouth?
  4. Prepare your own meal?
  5. Open car doors?
  6. Open jars that have previously been opened?
  7. Turn taps on and off?

A variety of evaluation tools have been devised for the hand, and they can be categorized into assessments of the neurovascular system, range of motion, sensibility, and function.

See Also: Hand & Wrist Movements

References

  1. Eberhardt K, Johnson PM, Rydgren L. The occurrence and significance of hand deformities in early rheumatoid arthritis. Br J Rheumatol. 1991 Jun;30(3):211-3. doi: 10.1093/rheumatology/30.3.211. PMID: 2049583.
  2. Blair SJ, McCormick E, Bear-Lehman J, Fess EE, Rader E. Evaluation of impairment of the upper extremity. Clin Orthop Relat Res. 1987 Aug;(221):42-58. PMID: 2955989.
  3. Fess EE: The need for reliability and validity in hand assessment instruments. J Hand Surg Am 11A:621–623, 1986.
  4. Jebsen RH, Taylor N, Triegchmann R, et al: An objective and standardized test for hand function. Arch Phys Med Rehabil 50:311, 1969.
  5. Beckenbaugh RD, Shives TC, Dobyns JH, et al: Kienbock’s disease : The natural history of Kienbock’s disease and consideration of lunate fractures. Clin Orthop 149:98–106, 1980.
  6. Purdue Pegboard Test of Manipulative Dexterity. Chicago, IL: Service Research Associates, 1968.
  7. Tiffin J, Asker E: The Purdue pegboard: Norms and studies of reliability and validity. J Appl Psychol 32:324, 1948.
  8. Crawford J: Crawford Small Parts Dexterity Test (CSPDT), Psychological Corp (catalog): Tests, Products and Services for Business, Industry, and Government. Cleveland, OH: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1985:32.
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