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an instrument for determining tactile sensibility. The esthesiometer permits investigation of stimulus thresholds for pressure, touch, vibration, heat, and cold. The instrument applies increasing or decreasing amounts of irritation to a specific area of the skin, a mucous membrane, or a cornea and alters the action time of an irritant or the distance between two irritants. Modern esthesiometers also regulate the rate of variation in the intensity of an irritant.