Scandinavian guidelines for initial management of minimal, mild, and moderate head injuries

Tor Ingebrigtsen*, Bertil Romner, Carsten Kock-Jensen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

193 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Background. The Scandinavian Neurotrauma Committee was initiated by the Scandinavian Neurosurgical Society to develop evidence-based guidelines for improved care of neurotrauma patients. Methods: A MEDLINE search identified 475 papers dealing with the management of minimal, mild, and moderate head injuries. Forty-two studies presenting class H evidence on the initial management of such injuries were reviewed and management guidelines were developed. Results: Implementation of the Head Injury Severity Scale is advocated. Patients with minimal injuries (no loss of consciousness, Glasgow Coma Scale score of 15) can be safely discharged. Routine early computed tomographic scan is recommended in cases with mild injuries (history of loss of consciousness, Glasgow Coma Scale score = 14-15) and patients with normal scans may be discharged. Computed tomographic scan and admission is mandatory in moderate injuries (Glasgow Coma Scale score = 13). All patients harboring additional risk factors should be scanned and admitted. A flow-chart for clinical decision making and a Head Injury Instruction card is introduced. Conclusions: The Scandinavian Neurotrauma Committee suggests guidelines that should be safe and cost-effective for the initial management of minimal, mild, and moderate head injuries.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)760-766
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Trauma - Injury, Infection and Critical Care
Volume48
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2000
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Computed tomography
  • Costs
  • Guidelines
  • Head injury
  • Management

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