Late-preterm babies at greater risk for problems later in childhood

new research from michigan state university shows that even late-preterm babies at greater risk for problems later in childhood:

“We found late-preterm babies are between two and three times more likely at age 6 to have lower IQs as well as higher levels of attention problems and symptoms of anxious, withdrawn behavior.”

there have been so many advances in neonatal care for preemies it’s often difficult for people to remember that every single week of gestation counts and there’s some basic wiring/development that needs finishing, even at 34+ weeks:

“Milford said the reason for the risk is that the brain simply isn’t developed enough at 34 to 36 weeks. “A lot of the development of higher-order functioning in the brain is occurring in the 34-to-36-week range,” she explained, adding that “there’s a reason that humans gestate for 40 weeks.” ”

with 168 kids in the study, born during 1983 and 1985, i wonder why didn’t they have a cohort of micropreemies? i premsume there weren’t enough long term survivors in the database.

it is a reminder that odin is getting to be about the age that we could/(should?) expect to see subtle behavioral/learning since he was, of course, born way before 34 weeks.

it’s strange to think that over 5 years ago we first grappling with how to make sense of the micropreemie odds.

2 thoughts on “Late-preterm babies at greater risk for problems later in childhood”

  1. I was involved in the whole HH debacle (if you don’t know who I’m speaking of, consider yourself blessed) several years ago. Out of annoyance and because of my past experience as an IQ specialist, I spent a considerable amount of time researching journal articles on preemie studies/conclusions. You don’t know me, so I’ll keep it ridiculously succint- Horrible, almost insignificant populations tested in general, completely different medical txs used in the 80s and even 90s on preemies, as well as that there were about 50% of the articles that did not show dire consequences (overall) and that these were results done with validity were rarely highlighted. Anyway, fwiw, if it was done with kids in the 80’s, ignore.

  2. excellent – thank you for the insight. it sure would be nice to see a well written recent review article of all the research.

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