Does the identification of seniors at risk (ISAR) score effectively select geriatric patients on emergency admission?

  • W. WeinrebeEmail author
  • Y. Schiefer
  • K. Weckmüller
  • R. J. Schulz
  • S. Rupp
  • S. Bischoff
  • M. Karaman
  • S. Goetz
  • H. J. Heppner
  • M. C. Polidori
Short Communication


The number of older patients admitted to emergency departments (ED) increases continuously. The Identification of Seniors at Risk (ISAR) score is currently recommended to screen patients in German ED, but its appropriateness is being criticized. ISAR scores and clinical characteristics from 98 emergency admissions (EA), 80 from acute geriatrics (AG) and 89 from a geriatric rehabilitation (GR) unit were compared retrospectively. No significant differences were found between groups, being the ISAR score positive in 87.7% of EA, 94.9% of AG and 94.4% of GR cases. None of positively identified geriatric patients in the EA was transferred to the geriatric ward of competence. EA patients showed significantly higher number of functional impairments (p = 0.001) and higher BI score (p < 0.0001) compared to AG and GR groups. A higher ISAR score threshold and additional functional information might be needed to better select patients in need of prompt treatment by a geriatric team.


Emergency admission Geriatric patients ISAR Selection for acute geriatric treatment 



This study was presented at the 2018 German Gerontology and Geriatrics Conference.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

All the above listed authors have no conflicts of interest to report.

Ethical approval

The study was approved by the Ethics Committee of the University of Cologne as well as by the Ethics Committee of the Clinic Wartenberg.

Statement of human and animal rights

The authors declare agreement with the statement of human and animals rights.

Informed consent

Being based on a retrospective data analysis there was no need for informed consent.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • W. Weinrebe
    • 1
    Email author
  • Y. Schiefer
    • 2
  • K. Weckmüller
    • 3
  • R. J. Schulz
    • 4
  • S. Rupp
    • 5
  • S. Bischoff
    • 6
  • M. Karaman
    • 7
  • S. Goetz
    • 1
  • H. J. Heppner
    • 8
  • M. C. Polidori
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Geriatrics, Hospital Meyriez and TafersHFR, University FribourgFribourgSwitzerland
  2. 2.Ageing Clinical Research, Department of Internal Medicine IIUniversity Hospital CologneCologneGermany
  3. 3.Clinic for Orthopedics and Trauma SurgeryCoblenzGermany
  4. 4.Department of GeriatricsSt. Marien HospitalCologneGermany
  5. 5.Department of Geriatrics/RehabilitationClinic WartenbergWartenbergGermany
  6. 6.Outpatient Clinic for Occupational TherapyBad FriedrichshallGermany
  7. 7.Institute for BiostatisticsBerlinGermany
  8. 8.Department of GeriatricsHelios Clinic Schwelm, University Witten-HerdeckeWittenGermany

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