Edmonton Frail Scale

Simple tool to assess frailty in older patients

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1.Clock test: Please imagine that this pre-drawn circle is a clock. I would like you to place the numbers in the correct positions then place the hands to indicate a time of ‘ten after eleven’.
2.In the past year, how many times have you been admitted to a hospital?
3.In general, how would you describe your health?
4.With how many of the following activities do you require help? (meal preparation, shopping, transportation, telephone, housekeeping, laundry, managing money, taking medications)
5.When you need help, can you count on someone who is willing and able to meet your needs?
6.Do you use five or more different prescription medications on a regular basis?
7.At times, do you forget to take your prescription medications?
8.Have you recently lost weight such that your clothing has become looser?
9.Do you often feel sad or depressed?
10.Do you have a problem with losing control of urine when you don’t want to?
11.Timed Get Up and Go: I would like you to sit in this chair with your back and arms resting. Then, when I say ‘GO’, please stand up and walk at a safe and comfortable pace to the mark on the floor (approximately 3 m away), return to the chair and sit down’.
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1. Clock test: Please imagine that this pre-drawn circle is a clock. I would like you to place the numbers in the correct positions then place the hands to indicate a time of ‘ten after eleven’.

More Information

Note to clinician: Draw a circle on a piece of paper and ask to individual being tested to add the hour and minute hands for "ten after eleven".

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About this Calculator

Frailty is characterized by a state of vulnerability to medical stressors. Defining and measuring frailty has gained attention due to improved understanding that frailty is linked to poor patient outcomes. The Edmonton Frail Scale (EFS) was developed as a practical tool to be used by health care providers without specialized geriatrics training. The EFS assesses 9 domains: cognition, general health status, functional independence, social support, medication use, nutrition, mood, continence, and functional performance. In a community-based sample of 158 participants over 65 years old the EFS, when compared to the clinical impression of geriatric specialists after completing a comprehensive assessment, was found to be a valid measure of frailty (Rolfson et al., 2006). In 366 hospitalized patients over 65 years old the EFS demonstrated a significant association with other screening tools (MMSE, Mini Nutritional Assessment, Barthel Index and Activities Daily Living, Geriatric Depression Scale, Skeletal Muscle Index of sarcopenia, Handgrip strength) (Perna et al., 2017). The EFS is user friendly and requires <5 min to administer.


Dent E, Kowal P, Hoogendijk EO.

Frailty measurement in research and clinical practice: A review.

European Journal of Internal Medicine 2016, 31: 3-10

Rolfson DB, Majumdar SR, Tsuyuki RT, Tahir A, Rockwood K.

Validity and reliability of the Edmonton frail scale.

Age and Ageing 2006, 35 (5): 526-9

Contributed By:
  • Lauren Cuthbertson, MD
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