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Behavioral and socioemotional competence problems of extremely low birth weight children

OBJECTIVE: To examine behavioral and social-emotional problems in extremely low birth weight (ELBW) children and to assess factors associated with behavioral and social competency outcomes at 30 to 36 months adjusted age. STUDY DESIGN: A total of 696 ELBW (401 to 1000 g) children from the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development Neonatal Research Network were included. Behavioral and social-emotional problems were assessed using the Brief Infant-Toddler Social and Emotional Assessment administered to parents. Unadjusted comparisons were performed between children with or without behavioral or social-emotional problems. Logistic regression was used to examine factors associated with behavioral outcomes. RESULT: Parents reported behavioral problems in 46.8%, deficits in social-emotional competence in 20.4% and having both behavioral and social-emotional competence problems in 15.4% of ELBW children. Characteristics associated with behavioral problems in logistic regression included female gender, lower household income and a Bayley Psychomotor Developmental Index (PDI) <70. Deficits in social competence were associated with Bayley Mental Developmental Index (MDI) and PDI scores <70 and Hispanic or Other races compared with White non-Hispanic. CONCLUSION: Half of the (51.9%) ELBW children showed behavioral or social-emotional competence problems at 30 months. Low socioeconomic status and low Bayley MDI and PDI scores were associated with behavioral and socioemotional difficulties


Peralta-Carcelen, M., Bailey, K., Rector, R., & Gantz, M. (2013). Behavioral and socioemotional competence problems of extremely low birth weight children. Journal of Perinatology, 33(11), 887-892. https://doi.org/10.1038/jp.2013.78

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