The National Institutes of Health Stroke Scale (NIHSS) is a 15-item neurologic examination stroke scale used to evaluate the effect of acute cerebral infarction on the levels of consciousness, language, neglect, visual-field loss, extraocular movement, motor strength, ataxia, dysarthria, and sensory loss. A trained observer rates the patent’s ability to answer questions and perform activities. Ratings for each item are scored with 3 to 5 grades with 0 as normal, and there is an allowance for untestable items. The single patient assessment requires less than 10 minutes to complete. The evaluation of stroke severity depends upon the ability of the observer to accurately and consistently assess the patient.
Access the NIHSS at https://nihstrokescale.org/.