The Glasgow Coma Scale (GCS) and some other neurologic and non-neurologic measures. The GCS provides a practical means by which the state of impaired consciousness of a patient in the ER, clinic, hospital, etc. can be evaluated at frequent intervals. It registers three aspects of neurologic function: 1) eye opening (never to spontaneously), 2) verbal responsiveness (no response to oriented and converses), and 3) motor responsiveness (no response to obeys). The scale requires little training to use. It is useful in following the course and predicting the outcome of severe head injuries (a score of less than 8 is associated with a poor prognosis). The lowest score possible is 3. The highest score possible is 15 (normal).
Pupillary reactivity and size can also be judged by the scale provided here. Body temperature, blood pressure, heart rate, and respiratory rate are noted. Oxygen percent saturation values must be approached with caution because of the limitations of pulse oximetry. Extremity strength is gauged and recorded.
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