Spinal Cord Injury Clinical Classification Systems: What Is Available and a Proposed Alternative

Neurosurg Clin N Am. 2021 Jul;32(3):333-340. doi: 10.1016/j.nec.2021.03.005. Epub 2021 May 6.


Spinal cord injury (SCI) remains a challenging disease in terms of surgical decision-making and improving neurologic outcome. As we have now entered a new era founded on routine "big data" capture, more advanced and meaningful yet simplified SCI classification systems and outcome measurement tools would be helpful to determine the efficacy of potential therapeutics in future clinical trials and registries. The proposed classification herein focuses on gross sensorimotor, sacral function below the injured level via an easy-to-use scoring system yielding grades 1 to 4 of injury severity. Such an optimized SCI scoring system would enhance real-time analytics and offer superior outcomes modeling.

Keywords: ASIA classification scale; Neurotrauma; Spinal cord; Spinal cord injury; Spine trauma.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Humans
  • Registries
  • Sacrum
  • Spinal Cord Injuries*