ADHD and developmental speech/language disorders in late preterm, early term and term infants

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We sought to compare the long-term neurodevelopmental outcomes of late preterm, early term and term infants while controlling for a wide range of maternal complications and comorbidities.


Data for the study was obtained from the South Carolina Medicaid claims and vital records databases from 1 January 2000 to 31 December 2003. We included infants weighing between 1500 and 4500 g, born between 34 0/7 and 41 6/7 weeks, and with no congenital anomalies. Outcome measures were based on the presence of ICD-9-CM codes for attention deficit hyperactivity disorders and developmental speech or language disorders.


A total of 3270 late preterm (LPIs), 11 527 early term (ETIs) and 24 005 term infants met the eligibility criteria. Rates for all outcome variables were statistically significant and elevated for LPI, but adjusted hazard ratios (AHRs) were only significant for the risk of developmental speech and/or language delay (LPI: AHR 1.36 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.23 to 1.50; ETI: AHR 1.27 95% CI 1.17 to 1.37).


Late preterm and early term deliveries have adverse long-term neurodevelopmental outcomes, and these outcomes should be considered when determining the timing of delivery.

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