What is the normal head circumference of a newborn?

Your baby’s head will grow at its fastest rate during the first 4 months after birth than at any other time. This increase is due to rapid brain growth. The average head circumference at birth is about 13.5 in. (34.5 cm).

How do you measure a baby’s head circumference?

Measure the circumference of your baby’s head. Wrap a flexible measuring tape around his head just above his eyebrows and ears, and around the back where his head slopes up prominently from his neck. The goal is to measure his head at the spot where it has the largest circumference.

What does a large head circumference indicate?

Children with macrocephaly have a head circumference (the measurement around the widest part of the head) that is greater than the 98th percentile. Sometimes a large head means that there is a problem in the brain which might require surgery.

What does baby head circumference indicate?

Another measure of infant growth is head circumference, or the size of your baby’s head. It’s important because it can indicate how well their brain is growing. If your baby’s brain isn’t growing properly, they may have a condition known as microcephaly.

How is the head circumference measured in a newborn?

Neural Exam – Newborn head circumference. It is very important to measure the head circumference, which sometimes is referred to as the OFC (occipital-frontal circumference) because the measurement is obtained by placing the measuring tape around the most prominent aspect of the frontal and occipital bones.

Where is the frontal circumference of the head measured?

Head circumference or OFC [occipital frontal circumference] is measured over the most prominent part on the back of the head (occiput) and just above the eyebrows (supraorbital ridges).

What does it mean when a baby has a small head?

 Microcephaly is the clinical finding of a small head compared with infants of the same sex and age, or gestational age if measured at birth  Head circumference is considered a reliable assessment of the volume of the underlying brain.

How big should the OFC be for a newborn?

This simple measurement may be the first clue to an underlying problem. The 50th percentile for OFC of a term newborn is 34 cm, so if an infant has a normal weight and length for a term infant (near 50th %ile for age), a measurement of <31 cm is disproportionately small (<< 10th %ile for age).