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Doctors develop bleeding test

16th December 2008

NHS doctors have created a new system to spot internal bleeding which might save the health service £13.6 million annually.

bedscorridor1

Doctors working at Glasgow Royal Infirmary said that their "scoring system" allowed them to understand how serious each patient's symptoms were.

People who scored zero on the Glasgow Blatchford Score (GBS) had the least risk of bleeding and could go home.

This could potentially free up NHS beds, as fewer patients would need to stay in hospital for observation.

Patients who scored more than zero were decided to be at more risk and needed to stay in hospital.

The GBS system combines the patient's details, an exam and lab results to come up with a score.

It was created by Dr Oliver Blatchford, a Glasgow-based consultant epidemiologist who works for NHS Health Protection Scotland.

When patients arrive at hospital, they have two blood tests taken, along with blood pressure and pulse tests. They will also be asked if they suffer from dizzy spells.

According to the answers, doctors will decide on their GBS score.

Dr Adrian Stanley, consultant gastroenterologist at Glasgow Royal Infirmary, headed the study.

Ninewells Hospital in Dundee, Royal Cornwall Hospital in Truro and University Hospital of North Tees in Stockton took part in the research.

Dr Stanley said: "Most patients would rather avoid coming into hospital unless absolutely necessary but accurate identification of patients who do not require inpatient management is critical."

"Our data suggests that if the GBS was extended to all UK hospitals, up to 100,000 bed-days could be avoided for this condition each year."

 

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