Adverse neurodevelopmental outcome in preterm infants: risk factor profiles for different gestational ages

Acta Paediatr. 2009 May;98(5):792-6. doi: 10.1111/j.1651-2227.2009.01219.x. Epub 2009 Feb 3.


Aim: Assessment of risk predictors for adverse neurodevelopmental outcome at 1 year of age in preterm infants with a gestational age <30 weeks (Group I) and 30-32 weeks (Group II).

Methods: Between January 2003 and December 2006, we prospectively enrolled 310 live-born infants between 23 and 32 weeks of gestation. The association between candidate risk factors and delayed motor or mental development (Bayley Scales of infant development II; psychomotor or mental developmental index <85) was analysed by means of logistic regression analysis.

Results: Two hundred and fifty infants were eligible for follow-up, and 205 (82.0%) completed the follow-up visit. Intracerebral haemorrhage, small for gestational age and late-onset sepsis were associated with an increased risk for delayed development in Group I (p < 0.05, each). Premature rupture of membranes was a risk condition relevant to Group II. Antenatal steroids were associated with a decreased risk of neurodevelopmental delay in both groups.

Conclusion: This study identified distinct risk factors for adverse outcome in preterm infants of lower (<30 weeks) and higher (30-32 weeks) gestational age. In the lower gestational age group, neonatal risk predictors are most important. Antenatal steroids appear to decrease the risk for adverse outcome in both age groups.

MeSH terms

  • Austria / epidemiology
  • Developmental Disabilities / epidemiology*
  • Female
  • Gestational Age*
  • Humans
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Infant, Premature
  • Infant, Premature, Diseases / epidemiology*
  • Male
  • Nervous System Diseases / epidemiology*
  • Prospective Studies
  • Risk Factors