Figure of Eight Measurement of the Hand

Original Editor - Anas Mohamed Top Contributors - Anas Mohamed, Manisha Shrestha and Kim Jackson

Purpose

A figure of eight measurements of hand is used to measure the edema or swelling over the hand.  Figure-of-eight measurements using a tape measure on the wrist and hand is an easy way to measure edema and can capture the accumulation in the dorsal hand that circumferential tape measurements do not capture.[1]

Technique

This method is preferred to measure with the tension-controlled measuring tape than standard tape.

Step1: A hand rested on the edge of the table.

Step2: Take the distal aspect of the ulnar styloid process as a starting point.

Step3: Then takes the tape measure over the anterior wrist to the distal aspect of the radial styloid process.

Step4: From there, the tape is brought diagonally (to the other side) across the back (dorsum) of the hand and over the fifth metacarpophalangeal joint line.

Step5: Then from the volar aspect of the hand, the tape is brought to the 4th metacarpophalangeal joints and then diagonally (to the other side) across the dorsum of the hand to the starting point (distal to ulnar styloid process).

Step6. Always compare the affected sie to the unaffected side.

[2]

Evidence

  • A figure of eight measurement method is a reliable and valid measurement tool for measuring hand edema in burned patients than water volumetry measurement.[3]
  • A figure of eight measurement method is a reliable and valid measurement tool for measuring hand edema in patients with hand pathology.[4]
  • ICCs for the intratester reliability of the figure-of-eight method were 0.96 (SEM, 0.47 cm) for tester 1 and 0.97 (SEM, 0.41 cm) for tester 2.
  • The ICC for intertester reliability of the figure-of-eight measurements was 0.94 (SEM, 0.58 cm).[3]
  • The Pearson correlation coefficient for the concurrent validity was r = .929 (p < .001).[1]

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 Nadar MS, Taaqi M. Reliability of Occupational Therapy Students Using the Figure-of-eight Technique of Measuring Hand Volume. Hong Kong Journal of Occupational Therapy. 2013 Jun 1;23(1):20-5.
  2. SAN PEDRO COLLEGE -PT DEPARTMENT. Figure of Eight Measurement. Available from: https://www.physio-pedia.com/Figure_of_Eight_Method_of_Measuring_Ankle_Joint_Swelling. [lasted assessed: 20th OCt, 2020]
  3. 3.0 3.1 Dewey WS, Hedman TL, Chapman TT, Wolf SE, Holcomb JB. The reliability and concurrent validity of the figure-of-eight method of measuring hand edema in patients with burns. Journal of burn care & research. 2007 Jan 1;28(1):157-62.
  4. Leard JS, Breglio L, Fraga L, Ellrod N, Nadler L, Yasso M, Fay E, Ryan K, Pellecchia GL. Reliability and concurrent validity of the figure-of-eight method of measuring hand size in patients with hand pathology. Journal of Orthopaedic & Sports Physical Therapy. 2004 Jun;34(6):335-40.