Purpose: To explore the relationship between perinatal variables and motor performance in children who were born with extremely low birth weight (ELBW) and were nondisabled at 1 and 4 years.
Methods: Children without neurological or cognitive impairment (n = 48) born weighing less than 1000 g between 1992 and 1994 were assessed at 1 and 4 years corrected age using the Neurosensory Motor Developmental Assessment (NSMDA). Scores were used to categorize motor performance as normal or abnormal.
Results: Chronic lung disease (CLD) of prematurity, necrotizing enterocolitis (NEC), and patent ductus arteriosus were associated with NSMDA category at 1 year. Chronic lung disease, male gender, and NEC were associated with NSMDA category at 4 years. Multiple regression analyses revealed that CLD and NEC were independently associated with abnormal motor outcomes at 1 year.
Conclusions: Early assessment and motor therapy is recommended for infants with CLD, because of its effect on motor performance in this otherwise healthy group of children born with ELBW.