The effects of aging on sensory parameters of the hand and wrist

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Tonak H. A., Taskiran H., ALGUN Z. C.

Journal of Gerontology and Geriatrics, vol.69, no.1, pp.6-13, 2021 (Scopus) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 69 Issue: 1
  • Publication Date: 2021
  • Doi Number: 10.36150/2499-6564-399
  • Journal Name: Journal of Gerontology and Geriatrics
  • Journal Indexes: Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.6-13
  • Keywords: geriatrics, hand, proprioception, sensation, wrist
  • Istanbul Medipol University Affiliated: Yes


Background & aims. It is generally accepted that there arises a decrease in sensory integrity with aging. Despite so much emphasis on the lower extremity, studies have not focused sufficiently on age-related sensory changes in the hands and wrists. The aim of our study is to evaluate the hand and wrist sensory parameters of young and geriatric people and to reveal the sensorial differences in young and geriatric hands. Methods. 60 elderly and 60 young individuals were included in our study. The 3D Motion Sensor mOOver® was used to assess joint position sense. Baseline Pneumatic Bulb Dynamometer® device was used to assess the grip sensitivity. The hand pressure sensitivities was evaluated with Stabilizer Pressure Biofeedback®. The vibration senses, sensory threshold and two-point discrimination were evaluated. Results. Joint position sense error rates of all movements of dominant and nondominant wrists and errors of grip and pressure sensitivity, sensory threshold and two points discrimination distance were found lower in youths (p = 0.000). Sense of vibration’s duration was found higher in youths (p = 0.000). Conclusions. Our results are of great importance in terms of demonstrating how aging affects sensory changes in the hand and wrist. Adequate and accurate assessment of the sensory parameters in the hand and wrist will be able to enable the accurate detection of pathologies that may be encountered in this region. This data will help professionals working in the fields of geriatric rehabilitation and hand rehabilitation to predict changes in sensory parameters and to design protective rehabilitation and treatment programs.