Performance of the Wells and Revised Geneva scores for predicting pulmonary embolism

Eur J Emerg Med. 2009 Feb;16(1):49-52. doi: 10.1097/MEJ.0b013e328304ae6d.


Objective: The objective of the study was to compare two scoring methods to predict the risk of pulmonary embolism (PE) as diagnosed with computed tomography angiography (CTA) and/or CT venography (CTV).

Methods: Prospectively over a 8-month period, emergency department patients and hospital inpatients with suspected PE were consecutively examined and their Wells and Revised Geneva scores calculated to stratify them into a risk group for PE probability. Then all patients were examined with CTA and CTV to determine the presence or absence of PE, as diagnosed by experienced radiology staff physicians.

Results: During the study period, 167 patients were suspected of having a PE and were interviewed for the calculation of their Wells and Revised Geneva scores. All patients underwent CTA or CTV, but the images of only 148 patients were adequate enough to make a certain diagnosis regarding PE. The data of these 148 patients were used for the study. The rates of PE in high, moderate, and low PE risk groups determined according to the Wells score and the Revised Geneva score were 89.6, 26.4, 7.8 and 83.3, 25.6, 0%, respectively. Among both inpatients and ED patients the area under the Wells score receiver operating characteristic curve was higher (P=0.04). When data from only ED patients were analyzed (104 patients) the scoring systems was not significantly different (P=0.07).

Conclusion: The Wells rule seems to be more accurate among both inpatients and emergency department patients. The Revised Geneva score can be used in emergency department patients with high reliability.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Validation Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Angiography
  • Cohort Studies
  • Emergency Service, Hospital*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Inpatients
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Pulmonary Embolism / diagnosis*
  • ROC Curve
  • Severity of Illness Index*
  • Tomography, X-Ray Computed
  • Young Adult