Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Very low birth weight linked to reduced quality of life in pre-school children

20.09.2006
Babies with very low birth weights tend to have a much lower quality of life when they are three or four years old, according to a study published in the latest issue of the UK-based Journal of Advanced Nursing.

Researchers assessed 118 children who had birth weights of 1500g or less and compared them with a control group of 170 born at normal weights to compare their quality of life when it came to physical, emotional, cognitive and social functions.

They discovered that the very low birth-weight children scored consistently lower scores on a scale designed to measure quality of life among pre-school children.

Their parents were also much more likely to say that their child had health issues, with 29 per cent reporting a current problem, compared with 18 per cent in the control group.

In general, children with low birth weight had poorer lung function, appetite and motor function than normal birth-weight children, as well as being more anxious, less positive and less lively.

Premature babies delivered before 28 weeks were much more likely to have a lower quality of life when it came to cognitive functions such as communication.

Longer stays in neonatal intensive care units were also linked to reduced social function. The researchers suggest that this could be related to higher stress levels in early life as no specific link was established between longer stays and reduced physical functioning.

The researchers also discovered that children with very low birth weights scored better on emotional and social quality of life scales if their primary caregiver had a higher level of education.

“Previous studies of very low birth-weight babies have mostly focused on issues such as death, illness, neurodevelopment, growth and cognitive ability” says lead researcher Dr Li-Yin Chien, Associate Professor in the Institute of Community Health Nursing at National Yang-Ming University, Taiwan.

“Our research underlines the importance of monitoring quality of life in children with low birth weights to identify those at risk and intervene early.

“Healthcare professionals need to consider a number of biological and environmental factors as part of their assessment. These include current health problems, age at delivery, length of stay in the neonatal intensive care unit and the educational level of the primary caregiver.”

Children ranging from 36 to 53 months were included in the study, supported by Taiwan’s National Science Council. 57 per cent were boys.

252 mothers, 33 fathers and three other caregivers took part in the questionnaire-based study, which was carried out using a Mandarin language version of a quality of life instrument developed in the Netherlands.

The 118 very low birth weight children were less than 1500g (three pounds and five ounces) and were cared for in the neonatal intensive care units of four hospitals in northern Taiwan. The survival rate for babies in this weight range is just over 76 per cent in Taiwan.

Meanwhile, the control group were children who attended preschools and weighed at least 2500g (five pounds and eight ounces) or more at birth.

The mothers of very low birth-weight babies tended to be younger than the mothers in the control group, and were half as likely to be educated to college degree or higher. 45 per cent didn’t work, compared with 17 per cent in the control group.

Annette Whibley | alfa
Further information:
http://www.journalofadvancednursing.com

More articles from Studies and Analyses:

nachricht A sudden drop in outdoor temperature increases the risk of respiratory infections
11.01.2017 | University of Gothenburg

nachricht Urbanization to convert 300,000 km2 of prime croplands
27.12.2016 | Mercator Research Institute on Global Commons and Climate Change (MCC) gGmbH

All articles from Studies and Analyses >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: How gut bacteria can make us ill

HZI researchers decipher infection mechanisms of Yersinia and immune responses of the host

Yersiniae cause severe intestinal infections. Studies using Yersinia pseudotuberculosis as a model organism aim to elucidate the infection mechanisms of these...

Im Focus: Interfacial Superconductivity: Magnetic and superconducting order revealed simultaneously

Researchers from the University of Hamburg in Germany, in collaboration with colleagues from the University of Aarhus in Denmark, have synthesized a new superconducting material by growing a few layers of an antiferromagnetic transition-metal chalcogenide on a bismuth-based topological insulator, both being non-superconducting materials.

While superconductivity and magnetism are generally believed to be mutually exclusive, surprisingly, in this new material, superconducting correlations...

Im Focus: Studying fundamental particles in materials

Laser-driving of semimetals allows creating novel quasiparticle states within condensed matter systems and switching between different states on ultrafast time scales

Studying properties of fundamental particles in condensed matter systems is a promising approach to quantum field theory. Quasiparticles offer the opportunity...

Im Focus: Designing Architecture with Solar Building Envelopes

Among the general public, solar thermal energy is currently associated with dark blue, rectangular collectors on building roofs. Technologies are needed for aesthetically high quality architecture which offer the architect more room for manoeuvre when it comes to low- and plus-energy buildings. With the “ArKol” project, researchers at Fraunhofer ISE together with partners are currently developing two façade collectors for solar thermal energy generation, which permit a high degree of design flexibility: a strip collector for opaque façade sections and a solar thermal blind for transparent sections. The current state of the two developments will be presented at the BAU 2017 trade fair.

As part of the “ArKol – development of architecturally highly integrated façade collectors with heat pipes” project, Fraunhofer ISE together with its partners...

Im Focus: How to inflate a hardened concrete shell with a weight of 80 t

At TU Wien, an alternative for resource intensive formwork for the construction of concrete domes was developed. It is now used in a test dome for the Austrian Federal Railways Infrastructure (ÖBB Infrastruktur).

Concrete shells are efficient structures, but not very resource efficient. The formwork for the construction of concrete domes alone requires a high amount of...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

12V, 48V, high-voltage – trends in E/E automotive architecture

10.01.2017 | Event News

2nd Conference on Non-Textual Information on 10 and 11 May 2017 in Hannover

09.01.2017 | Event News

Nothing will happen without batteries making it happen!

05.01.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

How gut bacteria can make us ill

18.01.2017 | Life Sciences

On track to heal leukaemia

18.01.2017 | Health and Medicine

Water - as the underlying driver of the Earth’s carbon cycle

17.01.2017 | Earth Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>