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Language in 2-year-old children born preterm and term: a cohort study
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  • Published on:
    Response to 'Observations'
    • Katherine Sanchez, Speech Pathologist Murdoch Children's Research Institute
    • Other Contributors:
      • Alicia Spittle, Physiotherapist
      • Angela T. Morgan, Speech Pathologist

    Dear Dr Howells,

     

    Thank you for your Rapid Response to our publication, ‘Language in 2-year-old children born preterm and term: a cohort study’ in the Archives of Disease in Childhood. We appreciate the opportunity to provide clarity on the points you raised.

     

    1. Infants in this study were recruited one to two weeks following birth as it was part of a larger longitudinal cohort study aimed at understanding early neurobehavioural and brain development. Medical staff recommended that infants were not approached if the infants were medically unstable or parents had previously requested not to be approached regarding research studies at this early stage.
    2. Due to the size of the sample, we did not perform subgroup analysis by gestational age at birth within the preterm cohort. We appreciate that the distribution of gestational age at birth is of interest, and provide this in the table below

     

    ...

    Gestational age in completed weeks

    Number of children

    Percent of very preterm group

    23

    1

    0.75%

    Show More
    Conflict of Interest:
    None declared.
  • Published on:
    Observations

    Dear Sanchez et al,

    I read with interest your recent publication “Language in 2-year-old children born preterm and term: a cohort study) in the Archives of Disease in Childhood. I have made certain observations, and would welcome your views on them.

    I notice (Figure 1) that you screened 557 preterm infants for eligibility. Ninety three of these were excluded as they were deemed unsuitable by medical staff and another hundred and seventeen were excluded for other reasons. As those numbers are quite substantial, I am curious to know what those factors were, and think that some details on those factors will further enhance the quality of the paper.

    Your preterm cohort is defined as <30 weeks gestation. The current evidence shows that mortality and morbidity in preterm babies is associated with degree of prematurity. Therefore, I am wondering that what was the distribution of gestational age in the group and was there any further subgroup analysis attempted.

    You mentioned family history having an impact on the likelihood of language delay in the introduction. However, I note that this was not included in list of factors explored. I wonder if there was any particular reason to do so.

    I look forward to hearing from you, and would like to thank you in anticipation for your time.

    Many thanks,
    Dr Anna Howells
    Paediatric SPR
    Community Paediatrics, Bromley

    Conflict of Interest:
    None declared.