OBJECTIVE: Determine how neurodevelopmental impairment (NDI) relates to concurrent outcomes for children born extremely preterm.
STUDY DESIGN: Retrospective cohort study children born 22 0/7-26 6/7 weeks' gestation at NICHD Neonatal Research Network hospitals. Outcomes were ascertained at 18-22 months' corrected age.
RESULT: Of 6562 children, 2618 (40%) died and 441 (7%) had no follow-up. Among the remaining 3483 children, 825 (24%), 1576 (45%), 657 (19%), and 425 (12%) had no, potential/mild, moderate, and severe NDI, respectively. Rehospitalization, respiratory medications, surgery, and medical support services were associated with greater NDI severity but affected >10% of children without NDI. Rehospitalization occurred in 40% of children with no NDI (mean (SD): 1.7 (1.3) episodes).
CONCLUSION: Medical, functional, and social outcomes at 18-22 months' corrected age were associated with NDI; however, many children without NDI were affected. These data should contribute to counseling families and the design of studies for childhood outcomes beyond NDI.