In 1952, at the 27th annual congress of anesthesiologists, the American anesthesiologist Virginia Apgar for the first time officially presented her system for assessing the state of a newborn in the first minutes of life. This is a simple method for the initial assessment of a baby's condition after immediate birth, which is still used today.
The scale assumes a summary analysis of five criteria, each of which is assessed in integer points from zero to two, inclusive. The result of the assessment can be in the range from 0 to 10. For ease of perception, let's take the English transcription APGAR - each letter corresponds to a certain characteristic.
A - activity - muscle tone and activity. In a healthy newborn, the limbs are bent to the body, the fists are clenched. He actively moves, strives to "escape" from the hands of the obstetrician.
P - pulse - pulse. The normal heart rate of a newborn is 130-140 beats per minute. With a pulse rate> 100 beats per minute, 2 points are set, <100 beats per minute - 1 point, no heartbeat - 0 points.
G - grimace response - the presence and severity of unconditioned reflexes that are mandatory for newborns.
A - appearance - the color of the skin, the appearance of the child. Normal skin color for a newborn is various shades of pink, from bright to pale. The presence of cyanosis (cyanosis) and the degree of its severity give rise to a decrease in the score.
R - respiration - breathing, cry of a newborn. If the baby cried right after birth, his cry is loud and shrill - 2 points. Weak cry, squeak, decrease in respiratory rate - 1 point. Lack of screaming and breathing - 0 points.
Children who score between 7 and 10 are considered good or excellent and usually require only routine care; those who scored from 4 to 6 points are in a satisfactory condition, and they may need only some resuscitation procedures; and those with a score of less than 4 need immediate assistance to save their lives. At one time it was believed that babies whose results remained low 5 minutes after birth were doomed to have neurological problems in the future, but recent studies have shown that most of these children grow up to be normal and completely healthy.
The Apgar score is one of three parameters, along with weight and height, that are reported to the parents of a newborn.