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Phys Ther. 1987 Sep;67(9):1342-7.

Intrarater reliability of manual muscle testing and hand-held dynametric muscle testing.


Physical therapists require an accurate, reliable method for measuring muscle strength. They often use manual muscle testing or hand-held dynametric muscle testing (DMT), but few studies document the reliability of MMT or compare the reliability of the two types of testing. We designed this study to determine the intrarater reliability of MMT and DMT. A physical therapist performed manual and dynametric strength tests of the same five muscle groups on 11 patients and then repeated the tests two days later. The correlation coefficients were high and significantly different from zero for four muscle groups tested dynametrically and for two muscle groups tested manually. The test-retest reliability coefficients for two muscle groups tested manually could not be calculated because the values between subjects were identical. We concluded that both MMT and DMT are reliable testing methods, given the conditions described in this study. Both testing methods have specific applications and limitations, which we discuss.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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