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Home > Reference Glossary B  >  Biophysical Profile

Biophysical profile (BPP)

An assessment of the well being of the fetus that uses the nonstress test (NST)  and ultrasound to examine fetal breathing movements, tone, and amniotic fluid amounts. A score of 2 is given for each component present. A score of 8 or greater is reassuring.
Component  Score 2 Score 0
Non-stress test Two or more fetal heart rate accelerations of at least 15 beats/min and lasting at least 15 seconds during  20 minutes of observation No accelerations or less than two accelerations of fetal heart rate in 20 minutes
Breathing 30 seconds of sustained fetal breathing during a 30 minute period of observation. (Hiccups are included as breathing activity) Less than 30 seconds of fetal breathing movements in 30 min
Movement 2 or more discrete gross body/limb movements in 30 minutes, simultaneous limb and trunk movements Less than 2 gross body/limb movements in 30 minutes
Tone One episode of motion of a limb from position of flexion to extension and rapid return to flexion (opening and closing of hand considered normal tone) Position of semi or full limb extension with no return or slow return to flexion with movement;absence of fetal movement
Amniotic Fluid Volume At least 1 pocket of fluid that measures at least 2 cm in two perpendicular planes Largest pocket of amniotic fluid measures < 2 cm in two perpendicular planes

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