• Article

Birth weight and cognitive function in young adult life: historical cohort study

Objective: To examine the relation between birth weight and cognitive function in young adult life. Design: Retrospective cohort study based on birth registry data and cognitive function measured during evaluation for military service. Subjects: 4300 Danish conscripts born between 1973 and 1975. Main outcome measures: Mean score in the Boerge Prien test of cognitive function; score is the number of correct answers to 78 questions and correlates with full scale intelligence quotient (IQ). Results: Mean score in the Boerge Prien test increased from 39.9 at a birth weight of less than or equal to 2500 g to 44.6 at a birth weight of 4200 g even after adjustment for gestational age and length at birth, maternal age and parity and other variables. Above a birth weight of 4200 g the test score decreased slightly. Conclusion: Birth weight is associated with cognitive performance in young adult life, Interference with fetal growth may influence adult cognitive performance

Citation

Sorensen, HT., Sabroe, S., Olsen, J., Rothman, K., Gillman, MW., & Fischer, P. (1997). Birth weight and cognitive function in young adult life: historical cohort study. BMJ (Clinical research ed.), 315(7105), 401-403.