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Neurocrit Care. 2010 Aug;13(1):141-51. doi: 10.1007/s12028-010-9382-x.

Clinical grading scales in intracerebral hemorrhage.

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College of Physicians & Surgeons, Neurological Institute of New York, Columbia University, New York, NY 10032, USA.


Intracerebral hemorrhage (ICH) carries higher risk of long-term disability and mortality than any other form of stroke. Despite greater understanding of ICH pathophysiology, treatment options for this devastating condition remain limited. Moreover, a lack of a standard, universally accepted clinical grading scale for ICH has contributed to variations in management protocols and clinical trial designs. Grading scales are essential for standardized assessment and communication among physicians, selecting optimized treatment regiments, and designing effective clinical trials. There currently exist a number of ICH grading scales and prognostic models that have been developed for mortality and/or functional outcome, particularly 30 days after the ICH onset. Numerous reliable scales have been externally validated in heterogeneous populations. We extensively reviewed the inherent strengths and limitations of all the existing clinical ICH grading scales based on their development and validation methodology. For all ICH grading scales, we carefully observed study design and the definition and timing of outcome assessment to elucidate inconsistencies in grading scale derivation and application. Ultimately, we call for an expansive, prospective, multi-center clinical outcome study to clearly define all aspects of ICH, establish ideal grading scales, and standardized management protocols to enable the identification of novel and effective therapies in ICH.

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