Objective To assess a detection tool to help paediatricians to identify, in preschool age children, minor neurocognitive disorders that interfere with education.
Methods 114 preterm singletons born at less than 32 weeks of amenorrhea, inborn, in a French tertiary perinatal care center, born between 1997 and 2001. Participants were invited for a medical examination and fast neurocognitive assessment battery (BREV) between 4 and 8 years and re-contacted between 6 and 10 years to evaluate their school level. We correlated results of the BREV and school level.
Results Mean gestational age was 29 weeks and mean weight 1164 g. Fifteen children (13.2%) had gotten abnormal results in the BREV and had had an abnormal education. Among the 68 children having a normal BREV, 65 (95.6%) had a normal education. The sensitivity of the BREV in our population tracking some unrest/minor disabilities interfering with the education was therefore 83.3% (95% CI: 57.7 to 95.6) and the predictive value of a negative test was 95.6% (95% CI: 86.8 to 98.9). For the 57 children (50%) having been assessed before the age of 5 years, the sensitivity and the predictive value of a negative test were 100%.
Conclusion Our survey shows that BREV is an exam that screens for minor neurocognitive disorders with an impact on education in preschool-aged children who were born preterm. The BREV, used in the setting of a follow-up network for premature children, would permit children to receive early special education before school failure.