The Apgar Scale

The Apgar scale is an assessment of the state of the newborn, the values ??of 6, 7, 8 and 9 points

In order for future mothers to understand exactly how after the delivery will be assessed the state of their child, we will consider in detail the principle of this scale.

How does the scale work

What is the Apgar scale and who is its founder? Virginia Apgar, a famous American professor of anesthesia, in the 50 years of the last century introduced a scale for assessing the health status of the child who was born. The main purpose of her method was to promptly identify babies in need of resuscitation. Initially, the scale was intended for nurses. It determined which child should be given more attention.

The technique was named after its founder. Sixty years of experience with the use of this evaluation of the newborn gives reason to believe that the Apgar scale is still fairly simple and reliable for a comprehensive assessment. She, in the opinion of many experts, is a bit subjective, because the points are set only on the basis of the obstetric examination of the child. The range of the rating scale is from 0 to 2 points, where 0 is set for absence of a certain attribute, 1 is set for its average severity, 2 - for a well-marked sign.

Let's consider what is specifically evaluated on a scale. It should be noted that for ease of evaluation, an English transcription of the name of Mrs. Virginia was taken. In the word APGA, each letter denotes a specific evaluation parameter.

  • A - activity - the activity and tone of the child's muscles. At the healthy kid the handles and legs are pressed to a body, the fists are compressed. The child is active, moving, the face expresses emotions of rest or discontent with a cry.
  • P - pulse - pulse. The heart rate of the baby is normally 130-140 beats per minute. If this figure in a newborn is more than a hundred beats per minute, then he is exposed to 2 points, less than a hundred -1 point, the absence of the heart rate is fixed 0 points.
  • G - grimace response - grimaces of the child, manifestation and severity of unconditioned reflexes of the newborn.
  • A - appearance - the color of the skin and the appearance of the child. Normal shades of pink (from bright to pale) are considered. The presence of cyanosis of the skin, called cyanosis, provides the basis for reducing the score.
  • R - respiration - the cry of the child, his breathing, reflex excitability. If the newborn loudly and shrilly screamed right after birth, then the score of this parameter is 2 points. A weak cry, turning into a squeak, low respiration rate is estimated at 1 point. Lack of breathing and screaming - 0 points.

Evaluation results and forecasts

The Apgar Scale is used twice to evaluate a newborn's condition: at the first and fifth minutes of his life. Evaluation in the first minute shows how the child suffered childbirth. The second assessment indicates the degree of its adaptation to the environment.

The results of the state are written in the form of fractions, where the first number means the first estimate, the second - the estimate during the second measurement. It should be emphasized that this scale is not the basis for making further forecasts of the state and health of the child.

Its results are interpreted in this way:

  • 7-10 points - there are no deviations in the state of health;
  • 5-6 points - minor deviations;
  • 3-4 points - significant deviations from the norm;
  • 0-2 points - a threat to the life of the newborn.

The condition of the children with the highest results is considered excellent, and they need only normal care. An evaluation of up to 6 points indicates a satisfactory condition and the need for some resuscitation procedures. A child with a score less than 4 points requires such procedures immediately. If the amount during the second measurement is less than 7, additional measurements should be made every 5 minutes. The child who received 5-6 points on the first measurement and 7-10 on the second, passes into the category of healthy children. It should be noted that the 10-point score on the Apgar scale is rare.

Once again we recall the subjectivity of the Apgar scale and that it is not a method for predicting a baby's development. Therefore, that a kid with a 9-point score will be smarter or healthier than the one who received 6 points. The development, health, ability of each child directly depends on the care, love, attention of his parents.

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