• NBAS;
  • Newborn behavior;
  • Newborn

Objectives: To determine the unique responses of a group of Korean full-term newborns and to describe the pattern of behavior observed in the first few days of life.

Design: A descriptive study describing the behavioral patterns of Korean newborns using the Neonatal Behavioral Assessment Scale.

Participants: Fifty newborns aged 1 to 3 days in a nursery of a large tertiary hospital in Daegu, Korea.

Results: Overall scores were at moderate levels in six clusters. These were (a) Response Decrement, (b) Social Interactive, (c) Motor System, (d) State Organization, (e) State Regulation, and (f) Autonomic System. Newborns showed good overall tone and activity level and low amount of irritable behavior. Although reflex responses were generally normal, Korean newborns showed particularly weak responses in standing and walking reflexes. Maternal variables such as employment and previous pregnancy history were related to the scores on the Neonatal Behavioral Assessment Scale.

Conclusion: The results of the study indicate that Korean newborns showed a moderate level of autonomic stability and motor control and overall good state organization. These findings also provide some evidence that the mother's health status and lifestyle during the pregnancy may affect newborn behavior after birth.