[Difficulties with the follow-up of a cohort of very preterm infants: The EPIPAGE Paris-Petite-Couronne population]

Arch Pediatr. 2006 Sep;13(9):1202-8. doi: 10.1016/j.arcped.2006.05.016. Epub 2006 Jul 12.
[Article in French]


Objectives: To describe the characteristics of the children of parents who did not respond to a follow-up questionnaire in a cohort of very preterm infants (EPIPAGE study) and to explore the reasons why they did not complete the questionnaires.

Methods: The non-respondents (N = 176) were the parents who did not return the questionnaires at 1 and 2 years. Contacts were organised by telephone calls and at home visits.

Results: The families of the non-respondents presented more socioeconomic difficulties and their children were born more preterm than those followed up without difficulties. The efforts made to contact the non-respondents revealed that their families were often confronted with major adverse socioeconomic difficulties, had severe illnesses and psychological troubles. Half of the children of the non-respondents were finally examined at the 5-year assessment. They showed lower performances at the cognitive development test and a poorer health status than the children of the respondents.

Conclusion: When the follow-up does not include the initial population in its totality, the socioeconomic difficulties are underestimated and probably also the rate of sequelae associated with very preterm delivery.

Publication types

  • English Abstract

MeSH terms

  • Child, Preschool
  • Cognition Disorders / epidemiology
  • Cohort Studies
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • France
  • Humans
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Infant, Premature*
  • Infant, Premature, Diseases / epidemiology
  • Infant, Very Low Birth Weight*
  • Parents*
  • Patient Dropouts*
  • Socioeconomic Factors
  • Surveys and Questionnaires