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Cognition, Language, And Behavior In Children Born Prematurely, With and Without White Matter Injury

Beck, Megahn Marie (2007) Cognition, Language, And Behavior In Children Born Prematurely, With and Without White Matter Injury. Master's Thesis, University of Pittsburgh. (Unpublished)

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Children born prematurely are at risk for perinatal brain injuries (PBI). Both prematurity and PBI confer risk for neurodevelopmental disabilities. We investigated the linguistic and behavioral characteristics of children born prematurely, with and without perinatal brain injuries, at ages 10-15. In total, 16 children born preterm participated. Eight were born at 30-37 weeks and eight were born earlier than 30 weeks gestation. Six children reportedly had PBI and ten children reported no PBI. Clinical tools were used to measure global language skills, vocabulary, reading and comprehension and grammar. Parent questionnaires were used to assess behavior. Children born after 29 weeks of age scored significantly higher on tests for receptive vocabulary, language memory, reading and passage comprehension than children born before 30 weeks gestation (p is less than or equal to 0.05). Scores reported for anxiety and depression symptoms were higher for the children born before 30 weeks than scores reported for the children born after 29 weeks. The mean scores of children with no PBI were significantly higher for expressive language and passage compehension than the mean scores of children with PBI. There were no significant behavior differences between the children with and without PBI. There were no differences between the children with and without PBI. There were no differences measured between groups, by PBI or gestational age, for tests of grammar and sentence comprehension, accuracy and reaction time. The results suggest that children with PBI may have difficulty with reading comprehension and expressive language and that gestational age and not PBI specifically, may have a greater effect on linguistics and behavior. Identifying long-term consequences of prematurity is relevant to public health because it will help a growing population of children at risk for neurodeveloopmental disabilities benefit from early intervention.


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Item Type: University of Pittsburgh ETD
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Beck, Megahn
ETD Committee:
TitleMemberEmail AddressPitt UsernameORCID
Committee ChairFeldman, Heidi
Committee MemberFeingold, Eleanoreleanor.feingold@hgen.pitt.eduFEINGOLD
Committee MemberGettig, Elizabethbetsy.gettig@hgen.pitt.eduBGETTIG
Date: 26 June 2007
Date Type: Completion
Defense Date: 26 March 2007
Approval Date: 26 June 2007
Submission Date: 12 April 2007
Access Restriction: No restriction; Release the ETD for access worldwide immediately.
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: School of Public Health > Genetic Counseling
Degree: MS - Master of Science
Thesis Type: Master's Thesis
Refereed: Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords: Language Development; Perinatal Brain Injury; Periventricular Hemorrhage; Periventricular Leukomalacia; Prematurity; Preterm birth; White Matter Disease
Other ID:, etd-04122007-180755
Date Deposited: 10 Nov 2011 19:36
Last Modified: 19 Dec 2016 14:35


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