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This score is used to asses the health of a newborn child immediately after birth. It is calculated at 1 and 5 minutes after birth and repeated serially if scores are low. It is named after Virginia Apgar, an American anesthesiologist who created the score in 1952 to quickly and uniformly evaluate a child's health at birth.

The score can be remembered with the help of the APGAR mnemonic:

A - appearance
P - pulse
G - grimace
A - activity
R - respiration

The total score should be interpreted as follows:

    ≤3: critically low
    4-6: fairly low
    7-10: normal

Points are awarded as follows:

Appearance
    0 = Blue or pale all over
    1 = Acrocyanosis
    2 = Body and extremities pink
Pulse
    0 = Absent
    1 = Less than 100 bpm
    2 = More than or equal to 100 bpm
Reflex Irritability
    0 = No response to stimulation
    1 = Grimace or feeble cry when stimulated
    2 = Cry of pull away when stimulated
Muscle Tone
    0 = None
    1 = Some flexion
    2 = Flexed arms and legs
Respiration
    0 = None
    1 = Weak, irregular gasping
    2 = Strong, lusty cry

References

  1. Swartz MH. Textbook of Physical Diagnosis: History and Examination. Philadelphia: W.B. Saunders Company; 2002.
  2. Bickley LS, Szilagyi PG. Bates' guide to physical examination and history taking. Philadelphia: Wolters Kluwer Health/Lippincott Williams & Wilkins; 2009.
  3. Behrman RE, Kliegman, RM, Jenson HB. Textbook of Pediatrics. 17th edition. Saunders; 2003.