Three-dimensional measurement of essential tremor

Joseph Y. Matsumoto, David W. Dodick, Lorna N. Stevens, Randall C. Newman, Patrick E. Caskey, Wayne Fjerstad

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

32 Scopus citations


A mechanical linkage device was used to measure the three-dimensional position of the fingertip during a postural task. Thirty patients with essential tremor were tested simultaneously with the device, uniaxial accelerometry, and clinical tremor measures. Eighteen patients were tested again 16 ± 4 days later. The device accurately recorded the three-dimensional behavior of essential tremor. Measures from the device included mean three-dimensional velocity, mean three-dimensional dispersion, and power of the three-dimensional acceleration. The logarithms of these measures were strongly correlated (r = .841-.984) with all clinical measures including self-reported tremor disability. The device measures were reliable within and between testing sessions (intraclass correlation coefficients = .971-.977). The performance of the device was superior to uniaxial accelerometry, most likely as a result of the three-dimensional nature of the measurements. We conclude that essential tremor can be validly and reliably quantified during a postural task providing the recording device records movement in three dimensions and the measurements are logarithmically transformed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)288-294
Number of pages7
JournalMovement Disorders
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1999


  • Accelerometry
  • Essential tremor
  • Measurement
  • Tremor

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology


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