Visual perception and visual-motor integration in very preterm and/or very low birth weight children: a meta-analysis

Res Dev Disabil. 2012 Mar-Apr;33(2):726-36. doi: 10.1016/j.ridd.2011.08.025. Epub 2011 Nov 23.


A range of neurobehavioral impairments, including impaired visual perception and visual-motor integration, are found in very preterm born children, but reported findings show great variability. We aimed to aggregate the existing literature using meta-analysis, in order to provide robust estimates of the effect of very preterm birth on visual perceptive and visual-motor integration abilities. Very preterm born children showed deficits in visual-spatial abilities (medium to large effect sizes) but not in visual closure perception. Tests reporting broad visual perceptive indices showed inconclusive results. In addition, impaired visual-motor integration was found (medium effect size), particularly in boys compared to girls. The observed visual-spatial and visual-motor integration deficits may arise from affected occipital-parietal-frontal neural circuitries.

Publication types

  • Meta-Analysis
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Child
  • Developmental Disabilities / epidemiology
  • Developmental Disabilities / physiopathology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Infant, Premature / growth & development
  • Infant, Premature / physiology*
  • Infant, Very Low Birth Weight / growth & development
  • Infant, Very Low Birth Weight / physiology*
  • Male
  • Psychomotor Performance / physiology*
  • Risk Factors
  • Visual Perception / physiology*