Journal of oral rehabilitation vol:29 issue:8 pages:720-730
Different methods of oral sensory tests including light touch sensation, two-point discrimination, vibrotactile function and thermal sensation were compared. Healthy subjects were tested to assess the results obtained from two psychophysical approaches, namely the staircase and the ascending & descending method of limits for light touch sensation and two-point discrimination. Both methods appeared to be reliable for examining oral sensory function. The effect of topical anaesthesia was also evaluated but no conclusion could be drawn as too few subjects were involved. Newly developed simple testing tools for two-point discrimination and thermal sensation in a clinical situation were developed prior to this study and tested for their reproducibility. Thermal sensation could be reliably detected in repeated trials. Although the hand-held instruments have some drawbacks, the outcome of these instruments in a clinical environment is suitable for assessing oral sensory function. Three different frequencies (32, 128 and 256 Hz) were used to estimate the vibrotactile function. Different threshold levels were found at different frequencies.