Send to

Choose Destination
Pediatr Emerg Care. 1999 Jun;15(3):215-23.

ABCs of scoring systems for pediatric trauma.

Author information

Department of Pediatrics, Primary Children's Medical Center, University of Utah School of Medicine, Salt Lake City 84113, USA.


This review presents an overview of scoring systems used in pediatric and adult trauma. Triage scoring systems, using readily available physical examination, physiologic, and/or mechanism of injury parameters, are used to determine appropriate prehospital referral patterns. The Trauma Score, Revised Trauma Score, Circulation/Respiration/Abdomen/Motor/Speech Scale, Prehospital Index, and Trauma Triage Rule were reviewed. Injury scoring systems based upon anatomic descriptions of all identified injuries, are retrospectively used to analyze trauma populations. The Abbreviated Injury Scale, Injury Severity Score, Modified Injury Severity Score, Organ Injury Scaling, and Anatomic Profile were discussed. The two trauma outcome analysis systems presented, TRISS and ASCOT, allow for reproducible quantification of trauma severity, and survival comparison between trauma populations. Many of these triage, injury severity, and outcome analysis systems were developed with patient survival as the major outcome variable. Although subsequent studies may have found them to have some predictive value for measures of trauma morbidity, these scoring systems do not specifically address long-term risk of impairment, and therefore overlook one of the most crucial elements of pediatric trauma care. The last 2 decades have seen considerable development of scoring systems and analysis methods applicable to the trauma patient. As presented, this trend includes both the elaboration of increasingly simple, field-oriented triage tools, and more complex mathematical techniques for trauma outcome analysis. Although not all systems were designed specifically with the pediatric patient in mind, validation or modification of these systems for the pediatric patient will likely occur in the future. It is anticipated that this field will continue to evolve with greater mathematical sophistication; a baseline familiarity of the early stages of this evolution may be of benefit to those caring for the pediatric trauma patient.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Loading ...
Support Center