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vol.37 issue3Prenatal care, low birth weight and prematurity in Brazil, 2000Impact estimates of breastfeeding over infant mortality author indexsubject indexarticles search
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Revista de Saúde Pública

On-line version ISSN 1518-8787Print version ISSN 0034-8910


MEIO, Maria Dalva Barbosa Baker; LOPES, Claudia S  and  MORSCH, Denise Streit. Prognostic factors for cognitive development of very low birth weight premature children. Rev. Saúde Pública [online]. 2003, vol.37, n.3, pp.311-318. ISSN 1518-8787.

OBJECTIVE: Very low birth weight premature children often show cognitive development abnormalities. There is scarce information about the outcome of these children at preschool age in Brazil.The objective of the study is to describe the cognitive development of a population of premature newborns and to assess possible prognostic factors for abnormalities. METHODS: A cohort study was conducted in a preschool children population whose subjects were very low birth weight premature babies born between January 1991 and September 1993. WPPSI-R Test was used for cognitive evaluation and it was applied by psychologists. Two cut-offs were set to describe abnormality: scores below 1 and 2 standard deviations (SD). RESULTS: Seventy-nine children aged 4 and 5 years were studied. The mean full WIPPSI-R score was 75.6 (±11.9). The incidence of abnormal 1 and 2 SD full score was 77.2% and 32.9%, respectively. After adjusting for the method of delivery, small for gestational age (OR=6.19, 95% CI 1.60-23.86), abnormal cerebral ultrasound exam (OR=5.90, 95% CI 1.04-9.83) and male sex (OR=3.20, 95% CI 1.32-26.35) were predictors of full score <70. CONCLUSIONS: Compared to the literature, these children showed a more severe cognitive development impairment. Small for gestational age, abnormal cerebral ultrasound exam and male sex were prognostic factors for worse outcome.

Keywords : Infant, premature; Child development; Cognition; Psychometrics; Infant, low birth weight; Psychological tests.

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