Preterm birth remains a public health priority given that one child out of ten is born before 37 weeks of gestation. Survival without major neonatal morbidity has increased in high-income countries, in particular in France and in cases of extreme preterm birth before 27 weeks of gestation. Rate of severe handicaps, such as cerebral palsy, is probably decreasing, but specific cognitive disabilities in a variety of domains remain frequent, interfering with normal learning abilities at school and explaining the high rate of special education needs. Prevalence of sequelae increases when gestational age at birth decreases. However, because there are more moderate to late preterm children compared to very preterm children, the absolute number of children with specific cognitive or neurological disabilities is equivalent in these two groups. Better characterization of the development in a recent cohort of very preterm children is necessary to improve the early detection of variations in normal neurodevelopment and to propose trials with remediation actions targeting working memory and language for example. These protocols could decrease the rates of learning disabilities at school.
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