Navigation Links
Effects of Premature Birth May Stretch Into Adulthood: Study

THURSDAY, June 23 (HealthDay News) -- New research suggests that the adverse effects of pre-term birth can extend well into adulthood.

The latest findings, from a University of Rhode Island study that has followed more than 200 premature infants for 21 years, revealed that preemies grow up to be less healthy, struggle more socially and face a greater risk of heart problems compared to those born full-term.

One reason for this, explained study author Mary C. Sullivan, professor of nursing at the University of Rhode Island and adjunct professor of pediatrics at the Alpert Medical School at Brown University, is that extremely low birth weight, repeated blood draws, surgery and breathing issues can affect stress levels among pre-term infants.

She pointed out these stressors produce higher levels of the hormone cortisol, which is involved in the regulation of metabolism, immune response and vascular tone.

Among Sullivan's findings:

  • The less a preemie weighs at birth, the greater the risk. Sullivan found preemies born at extremely low birth weight had the poorest pulmonary outcomes and higher resting blood pressure.
  • Premature infants with medical and neurological problems had up to a 32 percent greater risk for acute and chronic health conditions vs. normal-weight newborns.
  • Pre-term infants with no medical conditions, particularly boys, struggled more academically. Sullivan found that preemies tended to have more learning disabilities, trouble with math and need more school services than kids who were full-term babies.
  • Some children born prematurely are less coordinated. This may be related to brain development and effects of neonatal intensive care, the researchers said.
  • Premature infants also tended to have fewer friends as they matured, the team found.

The outlook isn't entirely bleak for premature infants, however. Infants who are born too soon are often resilient and have a strong will to succeed as they get older, the researchers found. And there are also certain "protective factors" that can help preemies overcome the negative issues associated with pre-term birth. Sullivan said that supportive parents and a nurturing school environment can mitigate the effects of premature birth.

The researchers concluded the ongoing monitoring of adults born prematurely is justified, and would also help scientists understand the impact of prematurity on adult health, particularly cardiopulmonary disease.

"These findings are important for parents, nurses in the neo-natal intensive care units, teachers and staff in the schools, disability services offices in colleges and primary care providers," Sullivan said. "By identifying the issues pre-term babies face in childhood, adolescence and through adulthood, we can all be better prepared to take steps to mitigate their effects."

The study's findings were slated for presentation in September at the 27th Congress meeting of the European Group of Pediatric Work Physiology in Exeter, England.

Because this study is to be presented at a medical meeting, the data and conclusions should be viewed as preliminary until published in a peer-reviewed journal.

More information

The U.S. National Institutes of Health provides more information on the complications of prematurity.

-- Mary Elizabeth Dallas

SOURCE: University of Rhode Island, news release, June 15, 2011

Copyright©2010 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. Drug May Ease Cognitive Effects of Huntingtons
2. YazTalk Warns Women of Life Threatening Side Effects
3. ACR, SBI: Avon Survey Reveals Potentially Deadly Effects of USPSTF Mammography Recommendations
4. Prozac and Celexa exhibit anti-inflammatory effects
5. Lung cancer research explores the effects of patient attitudes on patient outcomes
6. Increased radiation dose does not increase long-term side effects for prostate cancer patients
7. Prostate Cancer Radiation Side Effects May Subside With Time
8. ASTRO publishes supplement on protecting cancer patients by reducing radiation doses, side effects
9. Scans of brain networks may help predict injurys effects
10. Most women facing gynecologic surgery dont worry about its effects on sex
11. Adverse drug effects in epileptic patients not correlated with number of prescribed medications
Post Your Comments:
Related Image:
Effects of Premature Birth May Stretch Into Adulthood: Study
(Date:11/30/2015)... ... November 30, 2015 , ... Olympic Gold ... are collaborating with brands across various categories through traditional and social media marketing ... an elite group of Gold Medal Moms who can connect with today’s most ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... ... , ... The National Association of Professional Women (NAPW) honors ... Circle. She is recognized with this prestigious distinction for leadership in estate sales and ... than 850,000 members and over 200 operating Local Chapters. , “I’m pleased to welcome ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... ... November 30, 2015 , ... Being a caregiver for someone ... Maryland Health Care System, the Caregiver Support Program promotes the health and wellbeing ... job. Seventy-four percent report that their role as a caregiver has created marital ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... ... November 30, 2015 , ... According to research by the ... dental technicians to be certified or obtain continuing education. To increase awareness of ... Your Mouth?” campaign to inform dentists that the technicians they trust could lack ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... ... November 30, 2015 , ... The Museum ... summer, ushering in a new era of publicly accessible automated technology. Now, by ... continue to offer guests an up-close look at the shuttle at MOSI’s main ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:11/30/2015)... Express Scripts (NASDAQ: ESRX ) today announced it will ... access to a low-cost alternative to Daraprim (pyrimethamine) , ... recently priced out of reach for people with HIV, pregnant ... --> --> Imprimis is offering a compounded ... acid) for $1 per capsule for people whose pharmacy benefit is ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... SINGAPORE , Nov. 30, 2015  QT Vascular ... Vascular", and together with its subsidiaries, TriReme Medical LLC ... global company engaged in the design, assembly and distribution ... of vascular disease, is pleased to announce that a ... Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit ("Federal ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... , Nov. 30, 2015   Royal ... announced the launch of Radiology Solutions, a fully ... Radiology Solutions comprises customized, data-driven practice management approaches ... to help radiology practices improve care delivery and ... 2015 Radiological Society of North America Annual Meeting ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: