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Pediatric Glasgow Coma Scale (pGCS)

Assesses the mental state of child patients.

Use for children 2 years and younger only. For older children, use the standard Glasgow Coma Scale (GCS).

About the Creator
Dr. Graham Teasdale
Content Contributors
  • Joyce Brown, MD
  • Reviewed by Matthew Meigh, DO

Advice

  • The score can be used to assess and track a patient’s mental status and level of consciousness. However, like the standard GCS, the score alone is not sufficient to guide diagnosis or management. (Teasdale 2014)

Management

 

  • Although a valuable diagnostic tool, the score alone should not be used for management decisions in the acute setting.
  • Common applications include the need to consider intubation/definitive airway management in those with a GCS less than 8. However, the entire clinical picture must be taken into account.
  • Due in part to the value in identifying those with ciTBIs, any patient with an abnormal GCS warrants close assessment and monitoring.

 

Critical Actions

  • All patients with a GCS <15 need appropriate monitoring.
  • All patients with concern for mental status or neurologic compromise should be closely monitored and reassessed.
Content Contributors
  • Joyce Brown, MD
  • Reviewed by Matthew Meigh, DO