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Effect of contact location on vibrotactile thresholds at the fingertip

Effect of contact location on vibrotactile thresholds at the fingertip
Effect of contact location on vibrotactile thresholds at the fingertip
Vibrotactile thresholds depend on the characteristics of the vibration, the location of contact with the skin, and the geometry of the contact with the skin. This experimental study investigated vibrotactile thresholds (from 8 to 250?Hz) at five locations on the distal phalanx of the finger with two contactors: (i) a 1-mm diameter circular probe (0.78-mm2 area) with a 1-mm gap to a fixed circular surround (i.e., 7.1-mm2 excitation area), and (ii) a 6-mm diameter circular probe (28-mm2 area) with a 2-mm gap to a fixed circular surround (i.e., 79-mm2 excitation area). With both contactors, especially the smaller contactor at low frequencies (i.e., 8, 16, and 31.5?Hz), thresholds decreased towards the tip of the finger, although there was little variation around the whorl. With low frequencies of vibration, and at all five locations on the finger, similar thresholds were obtained with both contactors, consistent with the NPI channel not changing in sensitivity with a change in the area of stimulation. At high frequencies (i.e., 63, 125, and 250?Hz), thresholds were lower with the larger area of stimulation at all locations, except at the extreme tip of the finger, consistent with spatial summation in the Pacinian channel. It is concluded that with a 6-mm diameter contactor, moderate variations in location around the whorl have little influence on the measured thresholds. With the 1-mm diameter contactor there were greater variations in thresholds and extreme locations, near the nail and the distal interphalangeal joint, may be unsuitable for investigating sensorineural disorders.
vibration, thresholds, tactile channel, mechanoreceptor, fingertip
0899-0220
73-81
Whitehouse, Darren J.
a54f52f0-b41c-4e52-841a-df50987df887
Morioka, Miyuki
8eb26aca-8773-4e45-8737-61c2438d30d9
Griffin, Michael J.
24112494-9774-40cb-91b7-5b4afe3c41b8
Whitehouse, Darren J.
a54f52f0-b41c-4e52-841a-df50987df887
Morioka, Miyuki
8eb26aca-8773-4e45-8737-61c2438d30d9
Griffin, Michael J.
24112494-9774-40cb-91b7-5b4afe3c41b8

Whitehouse, Darren J., Morioka, Miyuki and Griffin, Michael J. (2006) Effect of contact location on vibrotactile thresholds at the fingertip. Somatosensory & Motor Research, 23 (1/2), 73-81. (doi:10.1080/08990220600741119).

Record type: Article

Abstract

Vibrotactile thresholds depend on the characteristics of the vibration, the location of contact with the skin, and the geometry of the contact with the skin. This experimental study investigated vibrotactile thresholds (from 8 to 250?Hz) at five locations on the distal phalanx of the finger with two contactors: (i) a 1-mm diameter circular probe (0.78-mm2 area) with a 1-mm gap to a fixed circular surround (i.e., 7.1-mm2 excitation area), and (ii) a 6-mm diameter circular probe (28-mm2 area) with a 2-mm gap to a fixed circular surround (i.e., 79-mm2 excitation area). With both contactors, especially the smaller contactor at low frequencies (i.e., 8, 16, and 31.5?Hz), thresholds decreased towards the tip of the finger, although there was little variation around the whorl. With low frequencies of vibration, and at all five locations on the finger, similar thresholds were obtained with both contactors, consistent with the NPI channel not changing in sensitivity with a change in the area of stimulation. At high frequencies (i.e., 63, 125, and 250?Hz), thresholds were lower with the larger area of stimulation at all locations, except at the extreme tip of the finger, consistent with spatial summation in the Pacinian channel. It is concluded that with a 6-mm diameter contactor, moderate variations in location around the whorl have little influence on the measured thresholds. With the 1-mm diameter contactor there were greater variations in thresholds and extreme locations, near the nail and the distal interphalangeal joint, may be unsuitable for investigating sensorineural disorders.

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More information

Published date: 2006
Keywords: vibration, thresholds, tactile channel, mechanoreceptor, fingertip
Organisations: Human Sciences Group

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 42190
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/42190
ISSN: 0899-0220
PURE UUID: 7d2bcd58-2a8b-4042-a7f0-f1258ac54c5d
ORCID for Michael J. Griffin: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0003-0743-9502

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 23 Nov 2006
Last modified: 05 Nov 2019 02:08

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