Validation of the Italian version of the Sunnybrook Facial Grading System

Chiara Pavese, Carmine Tinelli, Francesco Furini, Marta Abbamonte, Erica Giromini, Vittorio Sala, Annalisa De Silvestri, Miriam Cecini, Elena Dalla Toffola

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The Sunnybrook Facial Grading System (SFGS) is one of the most employed scales to assess the severity of facial palsy. The aim of our study was to produce an Italian version of the SFGS and of its explanatory criteria, and to test their measurement properties when employed by Italian physicians. A multidisciplinary committee translated and adapted the scale and its criteria into Italian. Six native Italian physicians, four of whom experienced in facial palsy and two novices, rated independently 29 videos of facial palsy patients twice. Internal consistency, agreement and repeatability were evaluated. The Italian version of the SFGS showed a high degree of internal consistency with a Cronbach's α of 0.91. The test-retest reliability was high for both inter-rater and intra-rater measures with an ICC of 0.96 and 0.98, respectively. The scores given by the novice physicians were comparable with the scores given by the expert physicians. Our study suggests that the Italian version of the SFGS has excellent internal consistency and reproducibility, comparable to the original scale. Our study confirms in an independent case record the high measurement properties of SFGS and provides the first validated Italian scale for the assessment of facial palsy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)457-463
Number of pages7
JournalNeurological Sciences
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2013


  • Facial nerve
  • Facial palsy
  • Facial paralysis
  • Italian version
  • Sunnybrook Facial Grading System
  • Validation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Dermatology


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