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19.01.2017 | Ideas and Technical Innovations | Ausgabe 4/2017

European Spine Journal 4/2017

Development of a new assessment tool for cervical myelopathy using hand-tracking sensor: Part 1: validity and reliability

European Spine Journal > Ausgabe 4/2017
M. Abdulhadi Alagha, Mahmoud A. Alagha, Eleanor Dunstan, Olaf Sperwer, Kate A. Timmins, Bronek M. Boszczyk
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Electronic supplementary material

The online version of this article (doi:10.​1007/​s00586-017-4948-3) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.



To assess the reliability and validity of a hand motion sensor, Leap Motion Controller (LMC), in the 15-s hand grip-and-release test, as compared against human inspection of an external digital camera recording.


Fifty healthy participants were asked to fully grip-and-release their dominant hand as rapidly as possible for two trials with a 10-min rest in-between, while wearing a non-metal wrist splint. Each test lasted for 15 s, and a digital camera was used to film the anterolateral side of the hand on the first test. Three assessors counted the frequency of grip-and-release (G-R) cycles independently and in a blinded fashion. The average mean of the three was compared with that measured by LMC using the Bland–Altman method. Test–retest reliability was examined by comparing the two 15-s tests.


The mean number of G-R cycles recorded was: 47.8 ± 6.4 (test 1, video observer); 47.7 ± 6.5 (test 1, LMC); and 50.2 ± 6.5 (test 2, LMC). Bland–Altman indicated good agreement, with a low bias (0.15 cycles) and narrow limits of agreement. The ICC showed high inter-rater agreement and the coefficient of repeatability for the number of cycles was ±5.393, with a mean bias of 3.63.


LMC appears to be valid and reliable in the 15-s grip-and-release test. This serves as a first step towards the development of an objective myelopathy assessment device and platform for the assessment of neuromotor hand function in general. Further assessment in a clinical setting and to gauge healthy benchmark values is warranted.

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Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 697 kb)
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