Analysis of the reliability and reproducibility of goniometry compared to hand photogrammetry

Acta Ortop Bras. 2012;20(3):139-49. doi: 10.1590/S1413-78522012000300003.


Objective: To evaluate the intra- and inter-examiner reliability and reproducibility of goniometry in relation to photogrammetry of hand, comparing the angles of thumb abduction, PIP joint flexion of the II finger and MCP joint flexion of the V finger.

Methods: The study included 30 volunteers, who were divided into three groups: one group of 10 physiotherapy students, one group of 10 physiotherapists, and a third group of 10 therapists of the hand. Each examiner performed the measurements on the same hand mold, using the goniometer followed by two photogrammetry software programs; CorelDraw(®) and ALCimagem(®).

Results: The results revealed that the groups and the methods proposed presented inter-examiner reliability, generally rated as excellent (ICC 0.998 I.C. 95% 0.995 - 0.999). In the intra-examiner evaluation, an excellent level of reliability was found between the three groups. In the comparison between groups for each angle and each method, no significant differences were found between the groups for most of the measurements.

Conclusion: Goniometry and photogrammetry are reliable and reproducible methods for evaluating measurements of the hand. However, due to the lack of similar references, detailed studies are needed to define the normal parameters between the methods in the joints of the hand. Level of Evidence II, Diagnostic Study.

Keywords: Goniometry; Hands; Photogrammetry; Reproducibility of tests.