We have analyzed the correlation between the House-Brackmann (HB) scale and Facial Nerve Grading System 2.0 (FNGS 2.0) in patients with Bell palsy, and evaluated the usefulness of the new grading system.
Sixty patients diagnosed with Bell palsy from May 2009 to December 2010 were evaluated using the HB scale and FNGS 2.0 scale during their initial visit, and after 3 and 6 weeks and 3 months.
The overall intraclass correlation coefficient (ICC) was 0.908 (P=0.000) and the Spearman correlation coefficient (SCC) was 0.912 (P<0.05). ICC and SCC displayed differences over time, being 0.604 and 0.626, respectively, at first visit; 0.834 and 0.843, respectively, after 3 weeks; 0.844 and 0.848, respectively, after 6 weeks; and 0.808 and 0.793, respectively, after 3 months. There was a significant difference in full recovery, depending on the scale used (HB, P=0.000; FNGS 2.0, P<0.05). The exact agreements between regional assessment and FNGS 2.0 for the mouth, eyes, and brow were 72%, 63%, and 52%, respectively.
FNGS 2.0 shows moderate agreement with HB grading. Regional assessment, rather than HB grading, yields stricter evaluation, resulting in better prognosis and determination of grade.