Vol. 4, No. 3, 1998 Page 7


Doctors are saving more and more low-birthweight babies, but many of these babies are disabled. A new study shows that very-low-birthweight babies are more likely than other babies to have mental as well as physical problems in childhood.

N. Botting et al. compared 137 12-year-olds who had been very small at birth to a control group. The researchers found a significantly higher rate of psychiatric disorders in the very-low-birthweight children. "The main psychiatric risk was attention deficit hyperactivity disorders," they say, with 31 of the very-low-birthweight children (23%) meeting clinical criteria, compared to only 6% of control subjects. Overall, more than one quarter of the children in the very-low-birthweight group had psychiatric disorders, compared to only 9% of the control children.


"Attention deficit hyperactivity disorders and other psychiatric outcomes in very low birthweight children at 12 years," N. Botting, A. Powls, R. W. Cooke, and N. Marlow, Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, Vol. 38, No. 8, November 1997, pp. 931-941. Address: N. Botting, Liverpool University, Liverpool, England.

Return to:
[Author Directory] [Front Page] [Issue Index] [Subject Index] [Title Index]