Reliability of the box and block test of manual dexterity for use with patients with fibromyalgia – Source: American Journal of Occupational Therapy, Jul-Aug 2009

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[Note: The box and block test counts how many of 150 blocks the seated subject can transfer from one box, over a vertical divider, to another box within 60 seconds; testing each arm in turn.]

Objective: The aim of this study was to determine the reliability of the Box and Block (B&B) Test of Manual Dexterity for upper-extremity function in patients with fibromyalgia and to compare their results with those of healthy control participants.

Method: We assessed reliability of the B&B Test within and between testers using the intraclass correlation coefficient (ICC). We compared fibromyalgia patient (n = 30) and control group (n = 30) scores using analysis of variance and population-based normative data.

Results: The B&B Test was reliable with ICCs of .90 to .85.

Fibromyalgia patients' B&B Test scores were significantly lower (more impaired) than those of the control group and standardized norms.

Conclusions:
• The B&B Test is a reliable measure of upper-extremity function in fibromyalgia patients
• And is able to reveal a reduction in upper-extremity function in these patients compared with both healthy control participants and normative scores.

Source: American Journal of Occupational Therapy, Jul-Aug 2009;63(4): 506-10. PMID: 19708480, by Canny ML, Thompson JM, Wheeler MJ. Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minnesota, USA.

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