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Article

Manual Muscle Testing—Force Profiles and Their Reproducibility

Division Regulative Physiology and Prevention, Department Sports and Health Sciences, University of Potsdam, 14476 Potsdam, Germany
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Diagnostics 2020, 10(12), 996; https://doi.org/10.3390/diagnostics10120996
Received: 31 October 2020 / Revised: 17 November 2020 / Accepted: 18 November 2020 / Published: 25 November 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Skeletal Muscle Diagnostics and Managements)
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. View Full-Text
Keywords: manual muscle testing; neuromuscular diagnostics; force profiles; reproducibility; adaptive force; handheld device manual muscle testing; neuromuscular diagnostics; force profiles; reproducibility; adaptive force; handheld device
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MDPI and ACS Style

Bittmann, F.N.; Dech, S.; Aehle, M.; Schaefer, L.V. Manual Muscle Testing—Force Profiles and Their Reproducibility. Diagnostics 2020, 10, 996. https://doi.org/10.3390/diagnostics10120996

AMA Style

Bittmann FN, Dech S, Aehle M, Schaefer LV. Manual Muscle Testing—Force Profiles and Their Reproducibility. Diagnostics. 2020; 10(12):996. https://doi.org/10.3390/diagnostics10120996

Chicago/Turabian Style

Bittmann, Frank N., Silas Dech, Markus Aehle, and Laura V. Schaefer 2020. "Manual Muscle Testing—Force Profiles and Their Reproducibility" Diagnostics 10, no. 12: 996. https://doi.org/10.3390/diagnostics10120996

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