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Manual Muscle Testing—Force Profiles and Their Reproducibility

  • The manual muscle test (MMT) is a flexible diagnostic tool, which is used in many disciplines, applied in several ways. The main problem is the subjectivity of the test. The MMT in the version of a “break test” depends on the tester’s force rise and the patient’s ability to resist the applied force. As a first step, the investigation of the reproducibility of the testers’ force profile is required for valid application. The study examined the force profiles of n = 29 testers (n = 9 experiences (Exp), n = 8 little experienced (LitExp), n = 12 beginners (Beg)). The testers performed 10 MMTs according to the test of hip flexors, but against a fixed leg to exclude the patient’s reaction. A handheld device recorded the temporal course of the applied force. The results show significant differences between Exp and Beg concerning the starting force (padj = 0.029), the ratio of starting to maximum force (padj = 0.005) and the normalized mean Euclidean distances between the 10 trials (padj = 0.015). The slope is significantly higher in Exp vs.The manual muscle test (MMT) is a flexible diagnostic tool, which is used in many disciplines, applied in several ways. The main problem is the subjectivity of the test. The MMT in the version of a “break test” depends on the tester’s force rise and the patient’s ability to resist the applied force. As a first step, the investigation of the reproducibility of the testers’ force profile is required for valid application. The study examined the force profiles of n = 29 testers (n = 9 experiences (Exp), n = 8 little experienced (LitExp), n = 12 beginners (Beg)). The testers performed 10 MMTs according to the test of hip flexors, but against a fixed leg to exclude the patient’s reaction. A handheld device recorded the temporal course of the applied force. The results show significant differences between Exp and Beg concerning the starting force (padj = 0.029), the ratio of starting to maximum force (padj = 0.005) and the normalized mean Euclidean distances between the 10 trials (padj = 0.015). The slope is significantly higher in Exp vs. LitExp (p = 0.006) and Beg (p = 0.005). The results also indicate that experienced testers show inter-tester differences and partly even a low intra-tester reproducibility. This highlights the necessity of an objective MMT-assessment. Furthermore, an agreement on a standardized force profile is required. A suggestion for this is given.show moreshow less

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Metadaten
Author details:Frank N. BittmannORCiD, Silas DechORCiD, Markus Aehle, Laura V. SchaeferORCiD
DOI:https://doi.org/10.3390/diagnostics10120996
ISSN:2075-4418
Title of parent work (English):Diagnostics
Publication series (Volume number):Postprints der Universität Potsdam : Humanwissenschaftliche Reihe (671)
Publisher:MDPI
Place of publishing:Basel
Publication type:Article
Language:English
Date of first publication:2020/10/31
Completion year:2020
Release date:2020/12/08
Tag:adaptive force; force profiles; handheld device; manual muscle testing; neuromuscular diagnostics; reproducibility
Volume:10
Issue:12
Page number:30
Funding institution:Universität Potsdam
Funding number:PA 2020_116
Organizational units:Humanwissenschaftliche Fakultät / Strukturbereich Kognitionswissenschaften / Department Sport- und Gesundheitswissenschaften
DDC classification:6 Technik, Medizin, angewandte Wissenschaften / 61 Medizin und Gesundheit / 610 Medizin und Gesundheit
Peer review:Referiert
Grantor:Publikationsfonds der Universität Potsdam
Publishing method:Open Access / Gold Open-Access
License (German):License LogoCC BY - Namensnennung, 4.0 International
External remark:Zweitveröffentlichung in der Schriftenreihe Postprints der Universität Potsdam : Humanwissenschaftliche Reihe ; 671