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Title: Neurodevelopmental outcomes of children born preterm : analyses into the validity of data collection and outcome reports
Author: Wong, Sze Ying
ISNI:       0000 0004 6348 1198
Awarding Body: Imperial College London
Current Institution: Imperial College London
Date of Award: 2015
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Background and aims: Information on the neurodevelopmental outcomes of children born very preterm is required for multiple purposes. Reliable and up-to-date data sources are lacking. The overall aim of this thesis is to evaluate the validity and usability of the neurodevelopmental outcome data of very preterm children available from current data sources. The specific objectives were: 1) to examine the validity of outcome data recorded during routine follow-up assessment 2) to explore early childhood social-communication difficulties exhibited by very preterm children 3) to assess the stability over time of neurodevelopmental diagnoses made in early childhood. Methods: Three studies were conducted to meet the objectives. For studies 1 and 2, I recruited children born at < 30 weeks’ gestation at 2 years corrected age (age corrected for prematurity) from 13 participating study sites. In study 1, I compared the agreement between the neurodevelopmental outcomes of 190 children recorded at their routine NHS assessments and data obtained by a research assessment using the Bayley Scales of Infant Development, 3rd edition. In study 2, the social-communication skills of 141 children were determined using the parent-completed Quantitative Checklist of Autism in Toddlers (Q-CHAT) questionnaire and compared to published results from the general population. In study 3, I conducted a systematic review and using meta-analytic methods, I calculated the pooled sensitivity and specificity of early developmental assessment in identifying school-age cognitive deficit from 24 studies. Conclusions: 1) Compared with research assessment, routine NHS follow-up assessment had a low sensitivity but high specificity for identifying children with neurodevelopmental impairment. 2) Very preterm children display greater early childhood social-communication difficulties and autistic behaviour than the general population as measured by their parents on the Q-CHAT. 3) Early neurodevelopmental assessment has high specificity but low sensitivity for identifying later school-age cognitive deficits.
Supervisor: Cowan, Frances ; Modi, Neena Sponsor: National Institute for Health Research
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral