Table 3: Descriptor of the six categories that currently comprise the American Society of Anesthesiology Physical Status Classification System*.

ASA scoreDescription of classificationPatient example

1Normal healthy patientA 21-year-old, well-conditioned male athlete undergoing elective groin hernia repair
2Patient with mild systemic diseaseA 46-year-old woman with mild but controlled hypertension undergoing a laparoscopic cholecystectomy
3Patient with severe systemic diseaseA 53-year-old man with insulin-dependent diabetes and coronary artery disease undergoing elective aortofemoral bypass
4Patient with severe systemic disease that is a constant threat to lifeA 62-year-old woman on chronic renal hemodialysis undergoing emergency laparotomy for perforative diverticulitis
5Moribund patient who is not expected to survive without the operationA 58-year-old man with morbid obesity, type 2 diabetes, and shock, undergoing extensive debridement for streptococcal necrotizing fasciitis
6Patient declared brain-dead whose organs are being removed for donor purposesA 35-year-old male motorcycle accident victim with brain death and normal cardiac function, for multiorgan thoracic and abdominal organ donation

These classes are clearly subjectively determined but have been very accurate in the prediction of risk of SSI when applied by experienced anesthesiologists.