Background and aims We aimed to identify the neurodevelopmental and behaviour outcome of preterms (GA <30 wks) at 8 years by age appropriate psychometric evaluations to see whether tests used at younger ages could predict worst outcomes at older ages in relation to some neonatal factors.
Method Along with neurologic examinations, 33 infants were prospectively evaluated at 3, 6, 12,18, 24 months of corrected age with Bayley Scales of Infant Development – II (BSID-II), at 3, 5 years with Stanford-Binet, at 8 years with WISC-R.
Results 72% of children had no (IQ >85), 24.3% had mild (IQ 74–84), 3% had major (IQ <70, blindness) impairments. 24.2% had special education, 15.2% ADHD, 6.1% autism, 9.1% learning/language, 6.1% anxiety disorders. The probability of neurodevelopmental test and IQ scores of VLBW infants <1000 gr being lower than healthy children at same age was 10.5 times higher (OR 4.7, 95%, CI 0.92–24.5) at 8 years of age. Oxygen treatment >30 days adversely affected the scores up to 18th month (OR 2.1,%95, CI 0.44–9.8). Babies having low scores of the18th month-cognitive and motor sub-test of BSID-II had 16 times higher probability of having low WISC-R total IQ scores at 8 years. (p < 0.05). 19 children with sepsis at 8 years had lower performance and total IQ scores (p < 0.05).
Conclusion Prolonged oxygen therapy and having and sepsis are significant factors affecting later IQ of VLBW infants. Lower BSID-II scores at 18th month may predict future lower total IQ scores. Longitudional follow up and early intervention is of paramount importance.