Overview of Pediatric Vital Signs
Blood pressure, pulse rate, respiratory rate, and temperature are the routine vital signs measured in medicine. These vital signs remain relatively constant throughout adult life. But children are not small adults, and normal vital signs are different as a newborn becomes an infant and then a child.
The normal values for blood pressure, pulse rate, and respiratory rate change as the newborn/infant/child grows and ages.
Body temperature does not change with age. However, body temperature may fluctuate depending upon the time of day, and a normal temperature may range between 97.0 F (36.1 C) and 100.3 F (37.9 C). A rectal temperature of 100.4 F (38.0 C) is considered a fever.
What Are Normal Ranges of Vital Signs for Various Ages?
The following charts summarize the range of age-based normal vital signs.
|Age||Awake Rate||Sleeping Rate|
|Neonate (<28 d)||100-165||90-160|
|Infant (1 mo-1 y)||100-150||90-160|
|Toddler (1-2 y)||70-110||80-120|
|Preschool (3-5 y)||65-110||65-100|
|School-age (6-11 y)||60-95||58-90|
|Adolescent (12-15 y)||55-85||50-90|
|Age||Normal Respiratory Rate|
|Infants (<1 y)||30-55|
|Toddler (1-2 y)||20-30|
|Preschool (3-5 y)||20-25|
|School-age (6-11 y)||14-22|
|Adolescent (12-15 y)||12-18|
|Age||Systolic Blood Pressure||Diastolic Blood Pressure|
|Birth (12 h)||60-85||45-55|
|Neonate (96 h)||67-84||35-53|
|Infant (1-12 mo)||80-100||55-65|
|Toddler (1-2 y)||90-105||55-70|
|Preschooler (3-5 y)||95-107||60-71|
|School-age (6-9 y)||95-110||60-73|
|Preadolescent (10-11 y)||100-119||65-76|
|Adolescent (12-15 y)||110-124||70-79|
Kliegman, R.M., et al. Nelson Textbook of Pediatrics, 20th Edition. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier, 2015.
Weaver, Donald J. "Hypertension in Children and Adolescents." Pediatrics in Review 38.8 August 2017: 369-382.