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‘Skin Roll’ (‘Pinch and Roll’) Test: Skinfold Thickness and Tenderness


Dr. Dalius Bansevicius, Hauglandsheia 2D, 4800 Arendal, Norway.


Skinfold thickness and tenderness are variables that have been used in the diagnosis of headaches ofcervical origin. In order to assess these variables in actual patients, the normal limits have to be properlyknown. Skinfold thickness and tenderness during the “skin roll” (“pinch and roll”) test were, therefore,investigated simultaneously in a group of 95 healthy individuals. Three positions (trapezius, mandibular,and supraorbital areas) were used.

The following values for skinfold thickness in healthy individuals during the skin roll test were obtained:trapezius position 5 to 26 mm (mean 11.2 mm, SD 3.9), mandibular 3 to 12 mm (mean 6.5 mm, SD 1.8), andsupraorbital 3 to 9 mm (mean 4.6 mm, SD 0.8).

Strong positive correlation was found between subject height and skinfold thickness in the mandibularposition. Skinfold thickness in the mandibular (P=0.003), as well as in the trapezius position (P=0.023)correlated positively with age. In 13 individuals (13.7%), tenderness to a varying extent was found in theshoulders (trapezius position). No pain was recorded in the other positions.

No correlation was found between skinfold thickness and tenderness (P=0.66).