This is a patient-generated assessment and for patients, depending on their clinical status, reading ability, and vision, completion generally takes less than three minutes to complete; for some patients it may take longer. For the professional who uses the PG-SGA© routinely, scoring of the patient component of the PG-SGA© (Boxes 1-4), takes less than 1 minute. The time required for performance of the nutritional physical examination will depend on the professional’s experience and comfort with its performance. Time for the performance of this can be done as an integral part of the physical exam as routinely performed. The scoring of the PG-SGA© in the context of the Pt-Global app/web tool© is carried out by the software and is available at the completion of the assessment.
For professionals who routinely do physical exams, the exam from a physician examination adds nothing beyond the routine exam (specifically addressing the global aspects of muscle tone and mass, fat mass, and fluid status).
For professionals who do not have extensive experience with physical examination or who have not thought of this from a nutritional perspective, global assessment of muscle, fat and fluid are what is needed rather than performing all the granular assessments on the second (back) page of the PG-SGA© form. The degree of granularity was developed in conjunction with the Oncology Nutrition Dietetics Practice group of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (1996) as an aid for dietitians, when physical examination was not as widely practiced by non-physician professionals. It is important to remember that the total score of the nutritional physical exam is three points (<8% of the total potential score). This realization places the exam into perspective, becoming an important but less intimidating part of the overall PG-SGA© assessment.