Introduction Implementation of the new myotonometrical diagnostic method in occupational medicine enables non-invasive, easy and quick evaluation of the functional state of muscles.
Aims Use of the myotonometrical method to study hand muscles in patients with work-related hand overload disorders, and analysing the correlations of the results of myotonometrical testing broken down by various diagnosed disease groups. To analyse whether myotonometry could be used in occupational medicine as a method for evaluating the functional state of muscles.
Method 25 patients with diagnosed work related carpal tunnel syndrome or/and tenosynovitis in the right wrist were studied. Diseases were diagnosed using ENMG and ultrasound examinations.
The mechanical characteristics of frequency, stiffness and elasticity of right hand muscle m. abductor pollicis brevis were recorded by means of the Myoton-3 hand-held myotonometer.
For data processing, the Stata program and the Student T-test were used.
Results An average age of patients 54, standard deviation 6.6, min 42 and max 67, the length of service 24.8 years, the average workday length 6.8 hours. Significant changes regarding muscle decrement and stiffness were apparent in affected workers as compared to the norm.
In subjects with the diagnosis of abd poll br decrement vs norm, the average values were 2.0 and 1.6, p < 0.001; i.e. there was a significant difference. Stiffness differed significantly from the norm: 311.4 vs 348.8, p = 0.004.
Conclusion In case of carpal tunnel syndrome and tenosynovitis due to overload of the right wrist area, also signs of an overload of the abductor pollcis muscle can be detected by myotonometric testing. Consequently, myotonometrical muscle study could be used as an auxiliary diagnostic method as well as an initial study in the course of physical examination in order to evaluate possible hand muscle overload.
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