Palmar Abduction Measurements: Reliability and Introduction of Normative Data in Healthy Children
Purpose: Previously, we studied normative and reliability data of palmar thumb abduction measurements (conventional goniometry, the Pollexograph thumb, the Pollexograph metacarpal, the Inter Metacarpal Distance, the American Society of Hand Therapists method, and the American Medical Association method) in healthy adults. Because many interventions aiming to improve palmar abduction are performed at an early age, the goal of this study was to assess normative and reliability data of these measurement methods in children. Methods: We performed measurements with the Pollexograph thumb, the Pollexograph metacarpal and Inter Metacarpal Distance in 100 healthy children to acquire normative data. A retest was performed in 63 children to assess intraobserver reliability. Results: Mean active and passive palmar abduction measured with the Pollexograph thumb was 62° (range, 40° to 76°). The range of motion of the Pollexograph metacarpal was smaller (mean 49°, range, 32° to 64°). The mean Inter Metacarpal Distance was 50 mm (range, 36-70 mm). Intraclass correlation coefficients of the Pollexograph thumb, Pollexograph metacarpal, and Inter Metacarpal Distance indicated excellent reliability (intraclass correlation coefficients between 0.85 and 0.92). Conclusions: Normative Pollexograph thumb and Pollexograph metacarpal data showed that means measured in children are comparable to values found in healthy adults. Reliability data indicated that the Pollexograph thumb, the Pollexograph metacarpal, and Inter Metacarpal Distance are also reliable measurement methods in children.