Glasgow coma scale

Glasgow Coma Scale or GCS, sometimes also known as the Glasgow Coma Score is a neurological scale which aims to give a reliable, objective way of recording the conscious state of a person, for initial as well as continuing assessment. A patient is assessed against the criteria of the scale, and the resulting points give a patient score between 3 (indicating deep unconsciousness) and either 14 (original scale) or 15 (the more widely used modified or revised scale).

GCS was initially used to assess level of consciousness after head injury, and the scale is now used by first aid, EMS and doctors as being applicable to all acute medical and trauma patients. In hospitals it is also used in chronic patient monitoring, in for instance, intensive care.

Eye Opening

E

spontaneous

4

to speech

3

to pain

2

no response

1

Best Motor Response

M

To Verbal Command:

obeys

6

To Painful Stimulus:

localizes pain

5

flexion-withdrawal

4

flexion-abnormal

3

extension

2

no response

1

Best Verbal Response

V

oriented and converses

5

disoriented and converses

4

inappropriate words

3

incomprehensible sounds

2

no response

1

E + M + V = 3 to 15

  • 90% less than or equal to 8 are in coma
  • Greater than or equal to 9 not in coma
  • 8 is the critical score
  • Less than or equal to 8 at 6 hours - 50% die
  • 9-11 = moderate severity
  • Greater than or equal to 12 = minor injury
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