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Table 2 Muscle activity in extensor digitorum communis (EDC) and flexor carpi radialis (FCR) during daily activities and hand exercises for patients with reumatoid arthritis (RA), hand osteoarthritis (HOA) and a healthy reference group (RG) presented as % of MVIC (median and 25–75 percentiles)

From: Differences in muscle activity during hand-dexterity tasks between women with arthritis and a healthy reference group

  RA (n = 20) HOA (n = 16) RG (n = 20)
  % of MVC in EDC % of MVC in FCR % of MVC in EDC % of MVC in FCR % of MVC in EDC % of MVC in FCR
Daily activities
Task 1(pen) 24.2 (18.0–30.5) 22.3 (11.4–40.6) 32.3** (30.1–75.0) 22.5 (15.8–53.8) 20.8* (16.9–27.4) 12.6 (5.5–35.8)
Task 2 (locking) 16.3 (10.7–23.7) 11.0 (6.4–26.0) 27.4* (15.3–65.7) 17.6 (11.3–25.5) 15.5 (8.3–21.0) 7.5 (4.1–18.0)
Task 3 (cutting) 29.6 (19.0–51.1) 29.5* (18.0–37.5) 45.4*** (30.6–62.0) 32.8** (20.9–49.3) 23.7** (20.7–29.6) 14.7*** (9.2–25.7)
Task 4 (zipper) 16.9* (14.2–30.3) 17.3** (10.9–27.3) 23.0** (17.2–32.4) 12.2 (8.9–30.3) 11.0*** (8.5–15.7) 7.7** (4.0–12.7)
Hand exercises
1 (squeezing) 66.8 (45.8–85.3) 104.2 (58.2–132.6) 54.9 (41.0–94.9) 113.1 (89.4–159.1) 50.1 (41.1–63.7) 73.5 (55.0–137.0)
2 (rolling) 35.5* (26.1–48.4) 22.6* (11.3–36.4) 38.7** (28.1–53.5) 28.0** (13.3–53.7) 20.9*** (16.5-30.5) 9.3*** (4.1-18.7)
3 (finger ext) 65.6 (44.1–93.0) 49.1 (39.6–76.2) 69.6 (44.0–138.8) 73.9 (49.1–116.6) 60.1 (36.7–77.9) 39.4 (29.2–84.6)
4a (opposition II) 55.8 (29.9–62.2) 27.2 (15.1–38.6) 47.6 (27.1–74.3) 32.1 (22.5–65.6) 29.9* (25.9–46.6) 21.9 (10.3–33.1)
4b (opposition III) 62.5 (33.1-85.7) 50.1 (29.0-73.4) 59.3 (39.9-169-5) 68.0 (38.9-89.4) 45.2 (36.4–66.3) 39.1 (20.9–77.9)
4c (opposition IV) 58.2 (44.2–82.9) 82.8 (39.9–110.7) 57.7 (42.8–134.2) 95.6 (69.0–160.9) 45.8* (40.8–67.2) 55.1 (30.7–108.9)
4d (opposition V) 68.9 (54.0–80.4) 61.3 (36.7–89.0) 77.1 (47.9–163.8) 78.4 (54.7–129.3) 56.1 (45.3–77.5) 46.9 (22.1–76.8)
  1. Comparisons between RA, HOA and the reference group (RG) in %MVIC of muscle activation analyzed by Kruskal-Wallis for differences between three groups (results after RA or HOA). Differences between arthritis group (RA and HOA) and RG was analyzed by Mann–Whitney (results after the RG).
  2. Daily activities: task 1 = writing with a pen, task 2 = locking a door with a key, task 3 = cutting with scissors, task 4 = pulling up a zipper.
  3. Hand exercises: 1 = squeezing the dough, 2 = rolling the dough with flat hands, 3 = finger extension, 4 = isolated opposition, digits II–V.
  4. *p < 0.05, **p < 0.01, ***p < 0.001.