Corpus callosum size in relation to motor performance in 9- to 10-year-old children with neonatal encephalopathy

Pediatr Res. 2008 Jan;63(1):103-8. doi: 10.1203/PDR.0b013e31815b4435.


Magnetic resonance imaging studies have contributed to recognize the patterns of cerebral injury related to neonatal encephalopathy (NE). We assessed whether a smaller corpus callosum (CC) explained the difference in motor performance between school-age children with NE and controls. Frontal, middle, and posterior areas of the CC were measured in 61 9-10-y-old children with NE and in 47 controls. Motor performance was determined using the Movement Assessment Battery for Children (M-ABC). Linear regression was used to assess whether differences in M-ABC between NE children and controls could be explained by CC size. The CC of 11/30 children with NE type I according to Sarnat (NE I) and 19/36 children with NE type II according to Sarnat (NE II) showed generalized or focal thinning, compared with 8/49 controls. Children with NE II had significantly smaller middle and posterior parts and total areas of the CC. Children with NE scored significantly worse on the M-ABC than controls. The reduction in size of the posterior part of the CC partly explained the mean differences on the M-ABC. Children with NE have poorer motor skills than controls, which is partly explained by a smaller size of the CC.

MeSH terms

  • Brain Diseases* / pathology
  • Brain Diseases* / physiopathology
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Child
  • Corpus Callosum / pathology*
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Infant, Newborn, Diseases* / pathology
  • Infant, Newborn, Diseases* / physiopathology
  • Linear Models
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Male
  • Motor Skills*
  • Neuropsychological Tests
  • Organ Size
  • Severity of Illness Index
  • Time Factors