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Preterm Birth

Many children managed in intellectual and developmental disability clinics are preterm birth survivors. Preterm birth is associated with a broad range of medical complications and neurodevelopmental problems, with the severity and frequency of these increasing with increasing immaturity at birth. Preterm birth is a major public health issue given the large number of infants born early, the increasing rate of survivors, and the high rate of motor, sensory, cognitive, educational, and behavioral impairments in these children. This entry focuses on the long-term neurodevelopmental outcomes for survivors of preterm birth.

Epidemiology

A typical pregnancy ends in birth between 37 and 42 weeks of gestation, with babies born during this period referred to as full-term infants. Babies born before 37 weeks of gestation are considered preterm. Preterm birth ...

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