Long-term neurodevelopmental outcomes in children born with gastroschisis: the tiebreaker

J Pediatr Surg. 2012 Jan;47(1):125-9. doi: 10.1016/j.jpedsurg.2011.10.028.


Purpose: We evaluated 2-year neurodevelopmental outcomes in children with gastroschisis.

Methods: We reviewed the records of children with gastroschisis treated between August 2001 and July 2008. Children discharged from the neonatal intensive care unit were referred to the state-sponsored Developmental Tracking Infant Progress Statewide (TIPS) program. We reviewed TIPS assessments performed before age 2 years. School districts evaluated children referred by TIPS and determined their eligibility for early intervention services. Poor outcomes were defined as scores of "failure" or "moderate/high risk" on the screening assessment or enrollment in early intervention services by 2 years. Children with gastroschisis were compared with case-matched nonsurgical, nonsyndromic children of similar gestational age and birth weight.

Results: One hundred five children were born with gastroschisis, and 46 were followed up with TIPS. There was no statistically significant difference in performance on screening assessments or in the rate of enrollment in early intervention services between the gastroschisis children and controls.

Conclusions: Children born with gastroschisis have similar 2-year neurodevelopmental outcomes as nonsurgical, nonsyndromic neonatal intensive care unit children of similar gestational age and birth weight. Both groups of children have a higher rate of enrollment in early intervention than their healthy peers. These data suggest that neurodevelopmental outcomes in gastroschisis children are delayed secondary to prematurity rather than the presence of the surgical disease.

MeSH terms

  • Case-Control Studies
  • Cohort Studies
  • Developmental Disabilities / etiology*
  • Female
  • Gastroschisis / complications*
  • Gastroschisis / surgery
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Male
  • Nervous System Diseases / etiology*
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Time Factors