Assessing manual dexterity: Comparing the WorkAbility Rate of Manipulation Test with the Minnesota Manual Dexterity Test

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Study Design:Cross-sectional study.Introduction:The WorkAbility Rate of Manipulation Test (WRMT), an adaptation of the Minnesota Manual Dexterity Test (MMDT), contains a revised board and protocols to improve its utility for therapy or fitness assessment.Purpose of the Study:To describe the development and preliminary psychometric properties of WRMT.Methods:Sixty-six healthy participants completed MMDT and WRMT in a random order followed by a user experience survey. We compared tests using repeated-measures analysis of variance, test-retest reliability, and examined agreement between tests.Results:Despite the similarities of these 2 instruments, the different administration protocols resulted in statistically different score distributions (P < .001). Results supported good test-retest reliability of WRMT (placing test ICC = 0.88-0.90 and turning test ICC = 0.68-0.82). The WRMT correlated moderately with MMDT (r = 0.81 in placing test and r = 0.44-0.57 in turning test). Bland-Altman plot showed that the differences in completion time were 3.8 seconds between placing tests and 19.6 (both hands), 0.3 (right hand), and 3.9 (left hand) seconds between turning tests. Overall, participants felt that the instruction of WRMT was easier to follow (44%) and preferred its setup, color, and depth of the test board (49%). Time required to complete 1 panel of 20 disks correlated highly with the time needed to finish a complete trial of 60 disks in both MMDT (r = 0.91-0.97) and WRMT (r = 0.88-0.95).Conclusions:Caution is warranted in comparing scores from these 2 test variants.Level of Evidence:3b.

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