Goal Attainment Scaling to Evaluate Intervention on Individual Gains for Children Born Extremely Preterm

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To investigate the effect of group-based physical therapy on individual gains among preterm and/or extremely low-birth-weight children with minimal or mild impairment at 4 years using Goal Attainment Scaling (GAS). To explore the relationship between GAS with motor and postural outcomes and effect of gender on GAS scores.


Twenty-four 4-year-old children (born <28 weeks' gestation and/or birth weight <1000 g) with minimal or mild motor impairment completed 6 group-based weekly intervention sessions and a goal-based home program. Assessments included GAS, Movement Assessment Battery for Children-Second Edition (MABC-2), postural stability, and limb strength after intervention.


GAS group T score improved, exceeding expected goal of “0” score after intervention (mean = 58.2, standard deviation = 0.82). GAS mean T-score and MABC-2 percentile were moderately correlated (r = 0.42, P = .04). Females improved more than males (P = .05).


Goals were achieved above expected level after intervention and were related to motor coordination. Male gender is a risk factor for less favorable outcomes.

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