Table 1

Different methods of defining injury/illness severity

Days missed0*–78–28>29
Pain on 0–10 VAS0–34–78–10
Athlete’s perception++++++
Disability in…CompetingTrainingActivities of daily living
HospitalisationNone/emergency room visit1–2 days>2 days
SurgeryNoneWith local anaesthesiaRequiring regional blocks or general anaesthesia
  • The definition of severity depends on the perspective of the stakeholder. For some athletes, severity might refer to suffering (eg, pain), or need for surgery. For a coach trying to manage a team, or a clinician having to make return-to-play decision, severity might be assessed by time loss (disability). For team management, it might be cost.

  • *If the athlete misses the rest of the training or competition session but returns for the next training/competition (same day, next day or later), the injury is recorded as a time-loss injury of 0 days.