The neurodevelopmental status of 342 very preterm infants who had undergone prospective ultrasound brainscans was assessed at a median corrected age of 52 weeks. The probabilities for neurodevelopmental disorders were calculated according to the ultrasound findings. The results showed that the probability of a major or minor disorder was low for infants whose scans did not show periventricular haemorrhage or markedly increased parenchymal echodensities in the first week of life, and for those whose scans at discharge gave no evidence of ventricular dilatation, hydrocephalus or cerebral atrophy. By contrast, the probability of a disorder was very high for infants with markedly increased parenchymal echodensities in the first week, and for infants with evidence of cerebral atrophy at discharge. The majority of the infants could be assigned, on the basis of the ultrasound scan at discharge, either to a large group who were at low risk of neurodevelopmental disorders or to a small group who were at high risk; the remainder were at intermediate risk. These findings may be used as a guide to the prognosis for other infants whose ultrasound scans show similar appearances.