What is GCS? – Glasgow Coma Scale

The Glasgow Coma ScaleGCS” is a tool used by healthcare providers to measure loss of consciousness. Scores from each part of the scale are useful for describing disturbances in Nervous system function and also help providers track changes. It is the most widely used instrument to measure coma and loss of consciousness.

What is the Glasgow Coma Scale?

What is GCS
What is GCS

The Glasgow Coma Scale (GCS) is a tool used to measure loss of consciousness, a modern system for “scoring” or measuring how conscious you are.

This modern system measures your level of awareness and how you respond to basic instructions, which are given with numbered points.

Experts at the University of Glasgow in Scotland invented this instrument in 1974, hence its name (Glasgow Coma Scale), and is currently widely used in medicine.

What is consciousness?

What is GCS
What is GCS

If we talk about consciousness, it exists in every person or creature, and this consciousness is what makes a person great, what differentiates humans from animals, because the level of consciousness in animals is limited or can also be understood. It is possible that consciousness in animals is determined to perform only one function.

If your level of consciousness is high then you can achieve more success in life, in fact only human consciousness is able to lead them on the path of liberation which should be the first goal of every living being, and is also mandatory for every living being. . .

In the modern medical context, consciousness has three requirements. What you need to be aware of:

  1. Waking up: This part involves sound and touch, it looks at how much you can wake up from sound or touch. This is what differentiates you from just sleeping in a coma.
  2. Alerts: This looks at how sensitive you are to the person you are talking to and how well you understand what others are saying, it helps you understand what is going on around you.
  3. Oriented: This means you know yourself, who you are, what your name is, what day it is, where is your homeland, etc.

When is the Glasgow Coma Scale used?

GCS is generally used as a requirement or as part of a neurological examination. And it is also useful for other conditions such as loss of alertness, brain injury or stroke, but it is also useful for chronic or natural traumatic brain injuries.

GAX may also work for some other conditions that do not involve injury, such as low blood sugar (hypoglycemia) because it is a level-measuring tool.

What does the Glasgow Coma Scale measure?

What is GCS

A neurological exam detects any problems with important parts  of your nerves or system.

And GCS has three categories that apply during this neurological examination. Most of this only applies to brain examinations.

However, some tests can also affect the spinal cord and nerves throughout the human body, which we have discussed below and under what conditions they can be applied:

Eye reaction: It shows how alert you are, and how good your vision is.

Motor response: This section measures brain and body muscle movements to see how well your brain can control them. In addition, the relationship between other parts of the body is also measured.

Verbal response: This test measures several key brain abilities to see how well your brain is working, including thinking ability, memory, attention span, and awareness.

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How does the Glasgow Coma Scale work?

To get a GCS score, providers take the scores from the three categories and then add them together. A good healthcare provider will examine these three categories in various ways and then come to a final conclusion.

For example, they will ask you various questions, such as what is your name, what city do you live in, what is your house number or what school do you study at, etc., some doctors will ask what day or date it is. her week. You can also ask questions like that, all these questions have the same goal, namely to find out your GCS level.

But the best use of GCS is to track the level of human consciousness. However, your healthcare provider may repeat the neurological examination periodically to accurately monitor any changes in your GCS score and to obtain final results.

This may not apply to everyone or maybe your GCS score is only known in one test so it varies from person to person, below we have explained the types of scoring guidelines for several categories, please read and find out:

Eye reaction

In this test, it looks at how awake you are and how good your eyesight is, it also looks at how big your reflex reaction is to pressure, if you are unconscious then how alert you are.

Many people may feel that pressure means serious injury, but this is not the case, here pressure means something like a light pinch or blow. This causes very little momentary discomfort and is enough to make your eyes react.

Eye reaction scoreThe meaning of the score
4You can open your own eyes and immediately and even keep them open.
3Your eye reaction is only visible when someone asks you to do so, otherwise your eyes remain closed.
2Your eyes open only when you feel extreme pressure.
1Your eyes weren’t open for whatever reason, but you were able to understand everything.

Verbal response

The provider checks for this by asking questions that test your memory, thinking ability and awareness of the world around you. Your healthcare provider can also use it to find out if you have a brain or nerve problem that affects your facial and mouth control.

Verbal response scoreThe meaning of the score
5You are oriented. You can answer questions correctly about who you are, where you are, day or year, etc.
4you’re confuse. You can answer the questions, but your answers show that you don’t fully understand what’s going on.
3You can speak and others can understand what you say, but your answers to questions don’t mean anything.
2You cannot speak and can only make sounds or noises.
1You cannot speak or make a sound.

Connection response

This section can reveal any problems related to the connection between your nerves, spinal cord, and brain. It also tests your brain’s ability to control muscle movements and how well you can understand and follow instructions.

Motor response (movement) score.The meaning of the score
6You follow instructions on how and when to move.
5You deliberately move away from something that is putting pressure on you.
4You simply move away from something that is putting pressure on you in the form of reflection.
3You flex (pull) your muscles in response to stress.
2You stretch (pull out) your muscles in response to stress.
1You don’t move in response to pressure.

What is GCS-P?

What is GCS
What is GCS

In 2018, an experiment was conducted in which a team of experts – including some of the original creators of GCS – published an updated version of “GCS” named “GCS-P”.

P means “ Pupil ”, like the pupil of a person’s eye. There is a fourth number that providers subtract from the standard GCS score.

Some students take this test where their reactions are important, and in this test brain function signals are checked. The scale ranges from 0 to 2. If your pupils do not respond to light exposure, there is a serious problem or injury affecting your brain.

This measurement process has a total of 3 levels ranging from 0 to 2, namely:

  • 2: No pupil reacts after being exposed to light.
  • 1: One pupil does not react to light, while the other pupil does.
  • 0: Both pupils immediately react to light.

Does a neurological examination using the Glasgow Coma Scale include pain?

In modern terms, GCS does not involve any pain, but older descriptions used the word “pain” to test a specific reflex, which is clearly incorrect. But the new guidelines change the word to “pressure.”

And this change is more accurate than the old term because GCS does not involve serious injury or pain, and no healthcare provider is actually trying to cause serious injury or pain to your patient.

As we said, these are just light response instructions to the brain as to how that part of the body functions with that response.

In the past, even the original GCS guidelines did not explain exactly where doctors should perform GCS tests. After that, a total of 1 year after the publication of GCS, the creators published a detailed guide on what points providers would emphasize, we have explained them below, please read them too:

Nail beds: Fingernails and toenails react differently to pressure, so doctors often apply pressure to them during a neurological exam to see how your body reacts to pressure.

Trapezius muscle: This muscle connects the human shoulder with the middle of the neck and back. Therefore, it is an excellent muscle for distributing pressure and an accurate muscle to test.

Supraorbital Notch: This is a small indentation in the skull bones just above the eyes and just below the eyebrows, which is often checked for sinus disease. By applying pressure to this part, a reaction occurs in the body. , such as water falling from the eyes or headaches.

What is the relationship between consciousness and the body?

Consciousness is something that every living creature has but does not know, and the meaning of human life is to bring consciousness to the best level, for this it is necessary to do yoga regularly, but in this day and age for people, this is not possible due to lack of time.

And this is the reason why nowadays most people are busy because their lifespan is short and their life span ends, and many diseases enter the body, but if you follow our advice and take good care of your body. So you will never suffer from any disease and do not need tests like GCS.

Notes from the Cleveland Clinic

The Glasgow Coma Scale is a simple tool that doctors use to measure the level of consciousness or loss of consciousness in a coma. Produced about 50 years ago but still widely used today because several improvements have been made over time, and it is hoped that in the future it can be made more modern, this device is a useful diagnostic tool. The equipment is ready. Because its use helps providers track changes in brain function with less pain. Therefore, you should also have more information about it as it is an important tool in our modern yoga.


In this article, I have shared with you some important information about GCS, and I hope you have understood everything about it, if you have any questions you can also ask us by commenting, We will try to answer your questions within 24 hours, and Bookmark us for similar health tips.

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