OnExam

The Glasgow Coma Scale (GCS) is a neurological scale that was designed to give an objective way to assess and compare a person's state of consciousness. The maximum score is 15 and the minimum score is 3. It was first published in 1974 by professors at the University of Glasgow.

Calculating the Score

The score is reported as the sum of the following three separate category scores:

Eye opening

    4 - Open spontaneously
    3 - Open to verbal command
    2 - Open to painful stimuli
    1 - Unable to elicit eye opening

Verbal

    5 - Oriented
    4 - Confused
    3 - Inappropriate words
    2 - Incomprehensible sounds
    1 - No verbal response

Motor

    6 - Obeys commands
    5 - Localizes to pain
    4 - Withdraws to pain
    3 - Decorticate flexion to pain
    2 - Decerebrate extension to pain
    1 - No motor response

References

    Lincoln, Matthew, McSheffrey eds. Essentials of Clinical Examination Handbook. 6th ed. Toronto, ON: University of Toronto Medical Society: 2010.