Cognitive and neurological outcome at the age of 5-8 years of preterm infants with post-hemorrhagic ventricular dilatation requiring neurosurgical intervention

Neonatology. 2012;101(3):210-6. doi: 10.1159/000331797. Epub 2011 Nov 10.


Background: Preterm infants with progressive post-hemorrhagic ventricular dilatation (PHVD) in the absence of associated parenchymal lesions may have a normal neurodevelopmental outcome.

Objectives: To evaluate neurodevelopmental and cognitive outcomes among preterm infants with severe intraventricular hemorrhage (IVH) and PHVD requiring neurosurgical intervention.

Methods: 32 preterm infants were admitted to a neonatal intensive care unit with PHVD requiring neurosurgical intervention, and were seen in the follow-up clinic for standardized cognitive, behavioral and neurological assessments between 5 and 8 years of age. Only preterm infants with a gestational age (GA) of <30 weeks, as well as preterm and full-term infants with PHVD and full-term infants with perinatal asphyxia are seen in our follow-up clinic at this age. There were 23 infants with a GA of <30 weeks in this study population. For these 23, matched controls were available and compared with the IVH group.

Results: The majority (59.4%) had no impairments. None of the children with grade III and 8 of the 15 children (53%) with grade IV hemorrhage developed cerebral palsy. More subtle motor problems assessed with the Movement-ABC score were seen in 39% (n = 9); the mean IQ of all children was 93.4, and 29% of the children had an IQ of <85 (-1 SD). Timing of intervention did not have a beneficial effect on outcome. With respect to cognition, no significant differences were found between the IVH and the control group.

Conclusion: The majority of the children in our population had no impairments. Cerebral palsy was not seen in any of the infants with a grade III hemorrhage.

MeSH terms

  • Brain Damage, Chronic / diagnosis
  • Brain Damage, Chronic / etiology
  • Brain Damage, Chronic / physiopathology
  • Cerebral Hemorrhage / complications
  • Cerebral Hemorrhage / physiopathology
  • Cerebral Hemorrhage / surgery*
  • Cerebral Ventricles / physiopathology
  • Cerebral Ventricles / surgery*
  • Child
  • Child Development
  • Child, Preschool
  • Cognition Disorders / diagnosis*
  • Cognition Disorders / etiology
  • Cognition Disorders / physiopathology
  • Developmental Disabilities / diagnosis*
  • Developmental Disabilities / etiology
  • Developmental Disabilities / physiopathology
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Gestational Age
  • Humans
  • Hydrocephalus / physiopathology
  • Hydrocephalus / surgery*
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Infant, Premature*
  • Infant, Premature, Diseases / etiology
  • Infant, Premature, Diseases / physiopathology
  • Infant, Premature, Diseases / surgery*
  • Male
  • Neurologic Examination
  • Severity of Illness Index