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Title: Learning disabilities among extremely preterm children without neurosensory impairment: Comorbidity, neuropsychological profiles and scholastic outcomes
Authors: Johnson, Samantha
Strauss, Victoria
Gilmore, Camilla
Jaekel, Julia
Marlow, Neil
Wolke, Dieter
First Published: 9-Aug-2016
Publisher: Elsevier
Citation: Early Human Development, 2016, 103, pp. 69-75
Abstract: BACKGROUND: Children born extremely preterm are at high risk for intellectual disability, learning disabilities, executive dysfunction and special educational needs, but little is understood about the comorbidity of intellectual and learning disabilities in this population. AIMS: This study explored comorbidity in intellectual disability (ID) and learning disabilities (LD) in children born extremely preterm (EP; <26(+0)weeks' gestation). SUBJECTS AND STUDY DESIGN: A UK national cohort of 161 EP children and 153 term-born controls without neurosensory impairments was assessed at 11years of age (the EPICure Study). OUTCOME MEASURES: IQ, mathematics and reading attainment, executive function, visuospatial processing and sensorimotor skills were assessed using standardised tests, and curriculum-based attainment and special educational needs (SEN) using teacher reports. RESULTS: Overall, 75 (47%) EP children and 7 (4.6%) controls had ID or LD (RR 10.12; 95% CI 4.81, 21.27). Comorbidity in ID/LD was more common among EP children than controls (24% vs. 0%). EP children with comorbid ID/LD had significantly poorer neuropsychological abilities and curriculum-based attainment than EP children with an isolated disability or no disabilities. LD were associated with a 3 times increased risk for SEN. However, EP children with ID alone had poorer neuropsychological abilities and curriculum-based attainment than children with no disabilities, yet there was no increase in SEN provision among this group. CONCLUSIONS: EP children are at high risk for comorbid intellectual and learning disabilities. Education professionals should be aware of the complex nature of EP children's difficulties and the need for multi-domain assessments to guide intervention.
DOI Link: 10.1016/j.earlhumdev.2016.07.009
ISSN: 0378-3782
eISSN: 1872-6232
Version: Post-print
Status: Peer-reviewed
Type: Journal Article
Rights: Copyright © the authors, 2016. After embargo this version will be an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-Non Commercial-No Derivatives License (, which permits use and distribution in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited, the use is non-commercial and no modifications or adaptations are made.
Description: The file associated with this record is under a 12 month embargo from publication in accordance with the publisher's self-archiving policy. The full text may be available through the publisher links provided above.
Appears in Collections:Published Articles, Dept. of Health Sciences

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