The Apgar score was devised in 1952 by Dr. Virginia Apgar (1909–1974) as a quick and simple method of assessing the condition of newborn infants. Typically an infant is assessed at 1 and 5 min after birth in five areas of functioning, each of which is assigned a score from 0 to 2. The five scores are summed, and a higher score indicates better health; a score of 7 or higher (out of a possible 10) indicates good to excellent health. The five areas of functioning, with their mnemonic in parentheses, are skin color (appearance), heart rate (pulse), reflex irritability (grimace), muscle tone (activity), and respiration (respiration). These areas were selected from a larger list of objective signs of infant health because delivery room personnel ...
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