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November 25, 2009

Optimizing Neuromotor Outcomes Among Very Preterm, Very Low-Birth-Weight Infants

Author Affiliations

Author Affiliations: Kennedy Research Center for Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities, Section of Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics, Department of Pediatrics, Pritzker School of Medicine, University of Chicago, Chicago, Illinois.

JAMA. 2009;302(20):2257-2258. doi:10.1001/jama.2009.1730

In the 1980s, the outcomes of infants who were born with very low (<1500 g) or extremely low (<1000 g) birth weight were reported in terms of major neurodevelopmental consequences on motor and sensory functioning. These high-severity, relatively low-frequency disorders include the cerebral palsy syndromes of diplegia, hemiplegia, and quadriplegia, as well as neurosensory disability from retinopathy of prematurity and sensorineural hearing loss. With advances in maternal fetal medicine, high-risk obstetrics, neonatology, and ophthalmology, the combined rates of these disorders are less than 10% in those born very low birth weight, between 15% and 20% in those born extremely low birth weight, and less than 0.5% in term-born infants.1,2