Do you know the Apgar test? The method aims to assess the newborn’s vital signs as soon as he is born, between the first and the fifth minute of life. The test happens quickly, it doesn’t hurt, and it is very important for doctors to measure five aspects of the baby’s health.
The acronym APGAR is related to the name of Virginia Apgar, the neonatologist who created this system. Based on your own surname, the acronym stands for the five criteria for evaluation: THEparency, FORulso, Gstretching, THEproductivity and Rspiration. Each of these items is worth 0 to 2 points, adding up to a total of 10 points, which form the “grade” that is given to the baby. If, in the fifth minute of life, an Apgar score of 6 or less is obtained, the index should continue to be calculated every 5 minutes until a score greater than 6 is obtained.
The Apgar score given to the baby can vary between the first and the fifth minute of life, and it is normal for the second score to be better than the first, as the baby recovers from the stress of childbirth. Everything varies according to the newborn’s reactions. The baby’s grades are recorded on the baby’s record at discharge from the hospital. This record is essential so that later it is possible to identify the baby’s birth conditions, especially in the first consultation with the pediatrician.
The importance of the Apgar test
The Apgar test can detect the need for immediate assistance in the child, such as, for example, assistance with breathing apparatus, heart rate, among others.
Most babies are born in good condition, that is, they receive an Apgar score between 7 and 10. In the case of premature births, Apgar scores are usually lower. However, this does not mean that your baby does not necessarily have a problem.
How is the assessment made for each aspect?
Find out how grades are given for each of the five aspects analyzed by the Apgar system:
Note 0: The body has a pale or blue-gray color;
Note 1: Pinkish color on the body, but bluish on the feet or hands;
Note 2: Pink color throughout the body.
Note 0: No heartbeat;
Note 1: Less than 100 beats per minute;
Note 2: Greater than 100 beats per minute.
Note 0: Flaccid muscles;
Note 1: Bend your fingers and move your arms or legs;
Note 2: Moves actively.
Note 0: Does not respond to stimuli;
Note 1: Make faces when stimulated;
Note 2: Weeps vigorously, coughs or sneezes.
Note 0: Does not breathe;
Note 1: Weak cry with irregular breathing;
Note 2: Strong crying with regular breathing.
Was my baby’s Apgar score good? Understand:
8 to 10: great health status, without the need for extra care.
5 to 7: status regular, and there may be a need for breathing apparatus using oxygen or with a massage performed by the doctor.
Under 5: the baby requires medical care special.
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