Language of the NICU
Common Terms and Abbreviations
Anemia: a common condition in preemies when there aren't enough red blood cells to carry oxygen to all the tissues of the body. Babies with anemia may be given vitamins and/or iron to build up their blood. If the anemia is severe, the baby may need to receive a blood transfusion, or injections of a red blood cell booster several times per week.
Apgar Score: An assessment on a scale of 1-10 of the baby at one and five minutes after birth.
Apnea: the term used to describe a pause in breathing (common in preemies).
BP: Blood Pressure
"Brady" (Bradycardia): a slowing of the heart rate, usually to less than 80 beats per minute for a premature baby.
Ml: metric measures of liquid-30 cc (or ml) equals 1 ounce; 5 cc is 1 teaspoon.
CPR: Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation
CPAP: Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (air or oxygen delivered under a small amount of pressure)
"Desats": When the oxygen concentration in the blood falls below the normal level.