One- and five-minute Apgar scores and umbilical cord arterial pH values were compared in preterm newborn infants of various gestational ages. The more premature the infant, the more likely the Apgar score was low in the presence of a pH ≥7.25. Conversely, the closer to term, the more frequently an infant with a pH of <7.25 had an Apgar score of ≥7. Therefore, in preterm infants, there is little congruity between the Apgar score and umbilical cord pH. Based on these findings, it is not appropriate to label preterm newborn infants as asphyxiated based on a low Apgar score. © 1984.