New Ballard Score Maturational Assessment of Gestational Age
Often the most important tool in medicine is the skilled examiner. Over the course of gestation, babies develop a wide range of characteristics that can be measured through simple examination. As the baby develops muscle tone, distinct posture ensues, as well as measurable angles of resistance in key muscle groups.
Physical characteristics are also key in determining gestational age. The eyes transform from being fused in very premature infants, to wide open in full-term babies. The skin and hair also give away important information in determining gestational age, as well as a host of other characteristics described in this site.