In a recent meta-analysis evaluating the relationship between chorioamnionitis and cerebral palsy, we found that chorioamnionitis is a risk factor for both cerebral palsy and cystic periventricular leukomalacia (cPVL). The current paper extends the meta-analysis by including studies published in the year 2000, and by further evaluating the causes of heterogeneity among individual study results. Using a random effects model, clinical chorioamnionitis was significantly associated with both cerebral palsy (RR 1.9, 95% CI 1.5-2.5) and cPVL (RR 2.6, 95% CI 1.7-3.9). Sources of heterogeneity included widely varying practices in the diagnosis of clinical chorioamnionitis, different gestational age characteristics, and varying study year. We conclude that based on the available literature, chorioamnionitis is a risk factor for both cerebral palsy and cPVL.
Copyright 2002 Wiley-Liss, Inc.