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Thread: question about breathing on Apgar score

  1. #1

    Default question about breathing on Apgar score

    My baby's apgar was 7 at one minute. I asked the midwife later what were the problems, and she said heart rate was one and breathing was zero. My partner also remembers a long pause as she was held by the obs after she was born (following epidural and forceps). Then she was put on my chest and started screaming (I personally don't recall any delay at all between her being born and being put on my chest).

    Does this mean that she wasn't breathing for one minute after birth? I feel scared by this, but she wasn't given any special treatment eg suction, so I assume it wasn't a major problem. My partner felt very scared too.

    Five minute apgar was 9, so no probs anyway, but I would like to understand more about this. Unfortunately, the midwife I asked was very reluctant to talk about it, so I didn't get any helpful info. from her. I should have kept asking I guess, but felt less than assertive after birth.

  2. #2

    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Port Macquarie, NSW


    Yes, it means that at one minute, she still didn't have any respiratory effort. This is not unusual, though - many babies are slow to breathe, and this is why the placenta will continue to function and the cord will cotninue to pulsate for some time after birth. It is also the reason why the American Academy of Pediatrics (the main professional body for neonatologists and paediatricians worldwide) has issued a statement condeming the practice of early cord clamping - because many babies need this extra minute or so to establish their breathing and heartbeat.

    So, in other words, don't worry - an apgar score of 7 at minute is quite common.

  3. #3
    Gigi's Avatar
    Gigi is offline BellyBelly Life Member - Love all your MCN friends
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    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    The Festival State


    my baby's first agpar was two out of ten
    she got zero for breathing

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