page image
page image Start Page page image Index page image Glossary of Terms page image Resources page image
page image
Touch localization
page image
page image page image page image page image
page image page image
page image
page image
Test to be performed - Touch localization (felt-tipped pen and tape measure)
Touch localization tests the individual’s ability to perceive where on the skin he/she was touched with a light stimulus.

Expected findings - The individual will be able to precisely indicate where he/she was touched.

Equipment - Felt-tipped pen and tape measure or flexible ruler

Testing procedure - method two

  1. Explain the procedure to the patient with his/her eyes open. For example, “I am going to lightly touch various parts of your arms (or other body part) with this felt-tipped pen, and when you feel the pen touching you, I want you to point to where you were touched and leave your finger there while I take a measurement.” 
  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. Lightly and quickly touch the body part with the tip of the pen with sufficient pressure to leave a single and small ink mark.
  5. Have the patient point to where he or she was touched.
  6. Measure the distance between the mark left by the felt-tipped pen and the finger. Use the middle of the end of the fingernail as the reference point for measurement.
  7. Repeat throughout suspected areas.
  8. Document findings.
page image
Section: Touch localization
page image
Page 3 of 6
page image
WSU Health Care Sciences Creative Commons License