The modified Rankin scale is commonly used to quantify functional outcome in individuals who suffer a neurological event. The scale was initially described by Rankin in 1957 to assess the outcome of cerebrovascular accidents 1. It has subsequently been modified 2,3 and has been used in a wide variety of clinical contexts (e.g. stroke, glioma and traumatic brain injury).
The scale comprises six levels, from 0 to 5, of increasingly severe disability where 0-2 is generally considered a good outcome with individuals assuming complete functional independence. A modified Rankin score of 6 is often used to denote an individual who is deceased.
- 0: no symptoms/normal
- 1: no significant disability despite symptoms; able to carry out all usual duties and activities
- 2: slight disability; unable to carry out all previous activities, but able to look after own affairs without assistance
- 3: moderate disability; requiring some help, but able to walk without assistance
- 4: moderately severe disability; unable to walk without assistance and unable to attend to own bodily needs without assistance
- 5: severe disability; bedridden, incontinent and requiring constant nursing care and attention
- 6: dead
- 1. Rankin J. Cerebral vascular accidents in patients over the age of 60. II. Prognosis. Scottish medical journal. 2 (5): 200-15. doi:10.1177/003693305700200504 - Pubmed
- 2. Bonita R, Beaglehole R. Recovery of motor function after stroke. Stroke. 19 (12): 1497-500. Pubmed
- 3. van Swieten JC, Koudstaal PJ, Visser MC, Schouten HJ, van Gijn J. Interobserver agreement for the assessment of handicap in stroke patients. Stroke. 19 (5): 604-7. Pubmed