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Short-term neurodevelopment and growth outcomes of very and moderate preterm Indian infants



To study the growth and neurodevelopmental outcome of very and moderate preterm infants (VMPT) compared to term appropriate-for-age (term AGA) infants at 18-months corrected age.


This prospective cohort study enrolled consecutively born 212 VMPT infants and 250 term AGA controls delivered during study period.

Outcome measures

Major neurodevelopmental impairment (NDI) defined as any one of cerebral palsy, motor (MoDQ) or mental developmental quotient (MoDQ) <70 on Developmental Assessment Scale for Indian infants, visual or hearing impairment, or epilepsy, and growth outcomes.


Among 195 VMPT and 240 term AGA infants who completed follow-up, the frequency of major NDI was 12.8% and 2.5% respectively (RR 5.1; 95% CI [2.13–12.19]). Major NDI was higher among infants <28 weeks gestation (39%) and birthweight <1000 grams (27%). A quarter of VMPT infants exhibited wasting and 18% stunting than 7% each among controls.


VMPT infants had a higher frequency of major NDI and growth failure at 18-months.

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Fig. 1: Study flow of very and moderate preterm (VMPT) infants and term controls from hospital discharge till 18-month neurodevelopmental assessment.
Fig. 2: Anthropometry Z score over time for very and moderate preterm infants.

Data availability

Dataset can be requested by writing to the corresponding author.


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Ajay, Reena, Faizan, Sukhram Babu, Manju Saxena, Farha, Suresh, Nisha, Sant, Meenakshi, Anuja Aggarwala, AK Gupta, Kanak, Alok Thakkar, Garima, Sandhya.


This work was supported by the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) Grant Number 5/7/305/08-RHN.

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Authors and Affiliations



SS and TS contributed to interpretation of data, data analysis, drafting of the manuscript, and critical revisions of the manuscript. SG conceptualized and designed the study, contributed to data collection and data analyses, and critically reviewed the manuscript. RS, KS, SG, AK, MJ coordinated and supervised data collection and critically reviewed the manuscript. SS, SG, and MB coordinated and supervised data collection. CPY and VS contributed to data analyses and critically reviewed the manuscript. AT and VKP conceptualized and designed the study and critically reviewed the manuscript. RA and MJS conceptualized and designed the study, supervised the initial analyses, reviewed and revised the manuscript.

Corresponding author

Correspondence to M. Jeeva Sankar.

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The authors declare no competing interests.

Ethics approval and consent to participate

The study has been approved by Institutional ethics committee of All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi (Ref: IEC/P-05/04.01.2010). Written informed consent was obtained from one or both parents prior to enrollment. The study was performed in accordance with the Declaration of Helsinki.

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Sivanandan, S., Gupta, S., Sahoo, T. et al. Short-term neurodevelopment and growth outcomes of very and moderate preterm Indian infants. J Perinatol 42, 1489–1495 (2022).

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