Orpington Prognostic Score (OPS) is a clinically derived score which incorporates measures of motor deficit, proprioception, balance and cognition. OPS and urinary continence were measured prospectively in 217 stroke survivors over 75 years of age at 1, 2 and 4 weeks after stroke and were correlated with dependence at discharge. Three levels of dependence were defined based on personal self-care abilities. OPS ranged from 2.0 to 3.2 (median 2.8) at 2 weeks after stroke in patients independent at discharge (n = 54). Their initial median Barthel index of 4 improved by a median of 12. Urinary continence was achieved in 95% of these patients by 2 weeks. All patients were discharged home, 39 (72%) within 4 weeks. Patients with limited dependence at discharge (n = 129) had OPS of 3.2-4.8 (median 4.0) at 2 weeks. Two-thirds were continent at 2 weeks. Their initial median Barthel index was 2 and changed by a median of 12. Seventy-one (55%) of these patients went home. OPS ranged from 5.2 to 6.8 (median 6.0) at 2 weeks in patients dependent at discharge (n = 34). About 20% of these patients were continent. Their initial median Barthel index of 2 improved by a median of 6 at discharge. Only five (15%) patients in this group went home. OPS was comparable with urinary incontinence for sensitivity (96% vs. 90%), specificity (36% vs. 39%) and accuracy (75% vs. 66%) in identifying stroke patients achieving independent living. OPS had a greater predictive value than urinary incontinence in identifying patients requiring institutional care (82% vs. 57%). OPS is a simple objective predictor of outcome in elderly stroke patients, suitable for everyday clinical use. It also can facilitate stroke research by identifying a 'middle group' of patients who would be most sensitive to changes in therapy or organization of stroke services.
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