Birth Injury & Medical Malpractice Lawyers
Chicago • Milwaukee
800.564.1707

Apgar Scores

Our birth injury attorneys build strong cases

Medical professionals have a duty to determine the health of newborns and take prompt action to address any problems. Failure to do so can result in a birth injury that has lifelong consequences. The birth injury attorneys at Goldberg & Schulkin Law Offices, P.C. hold negligent medical professionals accountable when they neglect to take these steps.

One method that medical professionals use is the Apgar Score. Apgar is a test that is performed 1 minute and 5 minutes after birth to assess the health of newborns. Developed in 1952 by anesthesiologist Virginia Apgar, it is still used today.

During an Apgar assessment, a doctor examines a newborn and assigns points based on:

  • Heart rate
    • 0 – No heart rate
    • 1 – Fewer than 100 beats per minute
    • 2 – More than 100 beats per minute
  • Respiration
    • 0 – Not breathing
    • 1 – Weak cry
    • 2 – Good, strong cry
  • Muscle tone
    • 0 – Limp
    • 1 – Some flexing (bending) of arms and legs
    • 2 – Active motion
  • Reflex response
    • 0 – No response to airways being stimulated
    • 1 – Grimace during stimulation
    • 2 – Grimace and cough or sneeze during stimulation
  • Color
    • 0 – The baby’s entire body is blue or pale
    • 1 – Good color in body but with blue hands or feet
    • 2 – Completely pink or good color

Apgar is also sometimes referred to in terms of Appearance (color), Pulse (heart rate), Grimace (reflex response), Activity (muscle tone) and Respiration. Generally, an Apgar score between 7 and 10 indicates a healthy baby. A lower score may indicate that the baby needs medical intervention. When this intervention is not taken, newborns can suffer serious health consequences.

The experience that gets results

Apgar scores are often used in medical malpractice claims involving birth injury as evidence that a baby was suffering from oxygen deprivation (hypoxia) or neurological damage. Medical professionals have a responsibility to act quickly and do everything they can to protect a baby’s health when an Apgar score is low.

When medical professionals are negligent, they will usually deny it. Hospitals and insurance companies know there’s a lot of money at stake. Which is why they have high-priced lawyers to protect them and prevent you from recovering the financial compensation you deserve.

If your child has suffered a birth injury, we know what you and your family are going through. Our birth injury lawyers have been helping families just like yours for more than 40 years. We know the physical, emotional and financial toll that birth injuries can take, and we know how to fight for your rights and get results.

As a result of a birth injury, your child may require lifelong care. This could involve regular medical treatment, therapy, medication and home health care assistance. The cost of this care can be overwhelming, but if negligence by a medical professional caused the birth injury, you should not have to pay.

Our firm builds strong cases based on evidence – including Apgar scores, medical records, witness statements and the testimony of medical experts. We know how to prove when negligence was responsible for the birth injury your child suffered, and we hold negligent parties accountable.

We serve clients in Illinois, Wisconsin and other states and have recovered millions for clients. Learn more about how one of our birth injury lawyers can help you. Contact us for a free consultation.

Chicago

20 North Clark Street
#3100
Chicago, IL 60602
Phone: 312-236-4146
Fax: 312-236-5913

Milwaukee

600 N. Broadway
Suite 310
Milwaukee, WI 53202
Phone: 414-263-4484