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Test to be performed - Graphesthesia
Graphesthesia tests the individual’s ability to use sensory input to identify a number or letter drawn onto his/her hand while visually occluded.

Expected findings - The individual is expected to accurately report the drawn letter or number.

Equipment - A blunt object or the health care practitioner’s fingertip (the health care practitioner needs to be mindful of not using his or her fingernails)

Testing procedure

  1. Explain the procedure to the patient with his/her eyes open. For example, “I will be drawing numbers, letters, or shapes on the palm of your hand with my fingertip, and then I will ask you to identify the number, letter, or shape.”
  2. Demonstrate the procedure with the patient’s eyes open until the patient understands the procedure to be performed.
  3. The patient closes his/her eyes, or vision is otherwise occluded.
  4. Slowly draw a number, letter, or shape using your finger or blunt instrument.
  5. Have the patient identify the stimulus.
  6. The procedure is repeated 3-5 times or until you are able to determine whether the patient has intact or impaired sensation.
  7. Document findings.
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Section: Graphesthesia
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