Registered Nurses' Association of Ontario

Nursing Best Practice Guidelines

Respiratory Distress Observation Scale (RDOS)
Variable 0 points 1 point 2 points Total
Heart rate per minute (auscultated) Baseline to +5 Baseline +6 - 10 beats Baseline +>10 beats  
Respiratory rate per minute (auscultated) Baseline to +3 breaths Baseline + 4-6 breaths Baseline +>6 breaths  
Restlessness: nonpurposeful movements None Occasional Slight movements Frequent movement  
Accessory muscle use: rise in clavicle during inspiration None Slight rise Pronounced rise  
Grunting at end-expiration: guttural sound None   Present  
Nasal flaring: involuntary movement of nares None   Present  
Look of fear     The upper iris is visible, the teeth are visible, the teeth are not parted, there are lines in the forehead, the eye brows are flat, the eye brows are raised, there are no wrinkles in the nose