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The Glasgow Coma Scale: What Is It?

The Glasgow Coma Scale: What Is It?

Any time someone sustains a brain injury, diagnosing the issue is one of the most important things to recognize what treatment may be available. When it comes to brain injuries, there are various ways to determine just how severe the damage is.a stethoscope on top of medical documents

One method of determining the severity of a brain injury is the Glasgow Coma Scale. This is a numeric system that dictates the severity of the brain injury by testing the injured person’s ability to open their eyes, respond verbally, and their motor response.

The functions are tested and evaluated with a number scale, typically ranging from non-testable to either 4, 5, or 6 depending on the function being tested. Here’s how each of the functions are tested individually and what those numbers mean.

Testing Eye Opening Functions

Because brain injuries can impact the eye opening function, this is tested and graded between non-testable and 4. The scale goes non-testable (NT), no eye opening function (1), opening eyes in response to pressure (2), opening eyes in response to sound (3), and opening eyes spontaneously (4).

Verbal Response Testing

After a brain injury, speech may be affected to the point of slurring or even the inability to speak. As such, the Glasgow Coma Scale considers this in diagnosing a brain injury. This includes non-testable (NT), no speaking (1), making sounds, but no words (2), saying words, but they’re not coherent (3), confused speech (4), and orientated speech (5).

Motor Response Testing

This testing analyzes motor response function, and ranges from non-testable (NT), no motor response (1), extension abilities (2), abnormal flexion (3), normal flexion (4), localized motor response (5), and obeying commands (6).

The numbers are added up based on the results of the testing and the final count is what is used to determine diagnosis. A score of 13 to 15 categorizes the brain injury as mild. A moderate brain injury is indicated by a score of 9 to 12. Finally, a score of 8 or less is categorized as a severe brain injury.

If you’ve suffered harm due to someone else’s negligence, our Clearwater brain injury attorneys at Roman & Gaynor are here to help. We stand by your side every step of the way to give you the peace of mind you deserve.

Call our firm today to discuss your potential case.

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