The Developmental Outcome of Very Low Birth Weight Infants at 18 Months

Lauren Foran, Pace University

Abstract

The objective of this study was to identify perinatal variables and demographic characteristics that influence cognitive, language, and behavioral development in very/extremely preterm and low birth weight infants at the corrected age of 18 months. An additional study goal was to explore the interaction of language specifically with cognitive functioning, attention, and perinatal and behavioral characteristic for this population. The study consisted of a total of 117 participants, born weighing less than 1250g and at less than 28 weeks gestation. Outcome measures included cognitive functioning and expressive and receptive language as measured by the Bayley-III. Behavioral functioning was assessed based on parent report using the Child Behavior Checklist (CBCL/1.5-5). Correlational, multivariate analysis of variance, a hierarchical cluster analysis, and cross tabulations were completed to examine relationships and membership associations based on performance and demographic and perinatal variables. The demographic variables were gender, socioeconomic status and minority status. The cognitive and language functioning, with significant differences in reported behavior problems, and demographic and perinatal characteristics among the groups. The following were identified as demographic and perinatal variables significantly associated with group membership; SES, the presence of NH severe grades, chorioamnionitis, and BPD. The effect size of these variables were all measured as moderate. Many behavioral differences were identified on the CBCL (1.5-5) significantly associated with group cognitive and language functioning, with significant differences in reported behavior problems, and demographic and perinatal characteristics among the groups. The following were identified as demographic and perinatal variables significantly associated with group membership; SES, the presence of IVH severe grades, chorioamnionitis, and BPD. The effect size of these variables were all measured as moderate. Many behavioral differences were identified on the CBCL (1.5-5) significantly associated with group membership including; anxiety problems, pervasive developmental disability (PDD), total problems, anxiety/depression, somatic complaints, emotional reaction, withdrawn, attention, internalizing behaviors, and externalizing behaviors. Children with low cognitive and language scores were more likely to have had a serious health condition, low SES, and more reported behavioral problems on the CBCL (1.5-5). Identifying children with these particular perinatal and demographic profiles may benefit intervention timing, focus, design, and improve later outcome.^

Subject Area

Psychology, Developmental|Psychology, General

Recommended Citation

Lauren Foran, "The Developmental Outcome of Very Low Birth Weight Infants at 18 Months" (January 1, 2014). ETD Collection for Pace University. Paper AAI3581801.
http://digitalcommons.pace.edu/dissertations/AAI3581801

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