Head injury (CG56)
Triage, assessment, investigation and early management of head injury in infants, children and adults
The advice in the NICE clinical guideline covers:
- what should happen before someone with a head injury reaches hospital
- who should go to hospital
- the checks and tests that should be carried out and the action that should be taken once the test results are known
- the care people should receive if they have been discharged from hospital within 48 hours
- the symptoms that healthcare professionals should watch out for after a head injury
- how information should be exchanged between different healthcare professionals
- the information and advice that should be made available to people with head injuries and their family or carers.
It does not specifically look at:
- the investigations or types of surgery that may be needed.
This guideline is an update of the clinical guideline CG4 on head injury that NICE produced in 2003.
Responsibility for undertaking a review of this guidance at the designated review date has passed to the National Clinical Guidelines Centre for Acute and Chronic Conditions (NCGCACC). The National Collaborating Centre for Acute Care is no longer active.
This page was last updated: 19 November 2013
- Web format
- Quick reference guide (PDF)
- NICE Guideline (PDF)
- Full Guideline
- CG56 Rheoli anafiadau i'r pen yn gynnar: deall canllawiau NICE (fformat MS Word)
Information for the public
Consultation on review proposal with stakeholders: 24 February 2011 - 09 March 2011
Review decision date: March 2011
Following the recent review recommendation, an update of this guideline is currently in the process of being scheduled into the work programme. Details of any update will be available on the guidelines in development webpage.
Next review date: TBC
Implementation tools and resources
- Audit support
- Costing template
- Slide set
- Head injury: suggested written discharge advice
- Head injury: observation proformas and Glasgow Coma Scale
- Head injury: sample referral letter to neurosurgeon
- Head injury: implementation advice
- Spotting the sick child online learning resource (DH)
See this guidance in practice
The summary of the key recommendations in the guidance written for patients, carers and those with little medical knowledge and may be used in local patient information leaflets.
Quick Reference Guide
The quick reference guide presents recommendations for health professionals
The published NICE clinical guideline, contains the recommendations for health professionals and NHS bodies.
The published full clinical guideline for specialists with background, evidence, recommendations and methods used.