International Standards for Neurological Classification of Spinal Cord Injury: cases with classification challenges

J Spinal Cord Med. 2014 Mar;37(2):120-7. doi: 10.1179/2045772314Y.0000000196.


The International Standards for the Neurological Classification of Spinal Cord Injury (ISNCSCI) is routinely used to determine the levels of injury and to classify the severity of the injury. Questions are often posed to the International Standards Committee of the American Spinal Injury Association regarding the classification. The committee felt that disseminating some of the challenging questions posed, as well as the responses, would be of benefit for professionals utilizing the ISNCSCI. Case scenarios that were submitted to the committee are presented with the responses as well as the thought processes considered by the committee members. The importance of this documentation is to clarify some points as well as update the SCI community regarding possible revisions that will be needed in the future based upon some rules that require clarification.

Keywords: Classification; International Standards; Neurological level; Spinal cord injury.

MeSH terms

  • Humans
  • Neurologic Examination
  • Reference Standards
  • Spinal Cord Injuries / classification*
  • Spinal Cord Injuries / diagnosis
  • Spinal Cord Injuries / physiopathology
  • Vocabulary, Controlled