Wednesday, July 21, 2010

APGAR scores

No one told me Aidan's APGAR scores when he was born. I've often thought about it, but didn't want to call Dr. B to find out.  I finally asked someone what they were.  1 minute after he was born, Aidan scored 0. Not surprising because they had to perform CPR on him.  At the 5 minute test he scored a 6. So what did I do with this information? I ran to the internet. This is what I found

"A baby who scores a 7 or above on the test at 1 minute after birth is generally considered in good health. However, a lower score doesn't necessarily mean that your baby is unhealthy or abnormal. But it may mean that your baby simply needs some special immediate care, such as suctioning of the airways or oxygen to help him or her breathe, after which your baby may improve.
At 5 minutes after birth, the Apgar score is recalculated, and if your baby's score hasn't improved to 7 or greater, or there are other concerns, the doctors and nurses may continue any necessary medical care and will closely monitor your baby. Some babies are born with heart or lung conditions or other problems that require extra medical care; others just take a little longer than usual to adjust to life outside the womb. Most newborns with initial Apgar scores of less than 7 will eventually do just fine.

Soooo since he scored a 6 then that means besides needing something help he was fine. This really upset me until I remembered something. We KNEW he was healthy until the $#@%$ bleed. We know that had he not had the bleed that he would probably still be here. (Of course other things could have happened, but I don't focus on that.) I'm much better now and am so thankful that I have those results. Every little piece of information helps glue the puzzle pieces that we already have. 

*Lori, Are you happy that I'm updating the blog? :-)*

I love you Aidan Christopher!



  1. Just to let you know Apgar scores are a tip off for health care workers who take care of your baby later as to how much resuscitation was needed at birth. For example, in the NICU when I would get hand over from another nurse it would always include the Apgar score. Premature babies almost inevitably have lower scores. There are 5 parameters to an Apgar and each scores two points (for a total of 10). These include Heart rate, Respiration, Muscle Tone, Reflexes and Colour. Preemies often score lower on things like colour and respiration because they are not developed enough to control these things like a bigger baby. That being said, a baby could come out with a score of 9 or 10 and later have a score of 0 and then 6 is not bad for a little peanut like your Aidan. What it is indicative of is that the measures that they took to resusitate him WORKED to a certain extent. He went from looking very bad with a score of zero at 1 minute to looking 'meh' with a score of 6 at 5 minutes. In between that time they were obviously working on him, and his body was attempting to recover thus helping him score a 6. I don't know if that confuses you or not, but I just wanted you to know that there is NO way for his later bleed to have been picked up or avoided or done anything about during those first few minutes. Aidan's medical team did just what they needed to in those few minutes and they improved his score from a zero to a six!

  2. Also, even the healthiest full term babies almost never score a ten. They often get one off for colour as even full term babies often take longer than the first minute to appear completely pink.