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Early Hum Dev. 1987 Mar;15(2):75-84.

Prognosis of perinatal brain damage: a prospective study of a one year birth cohort of 12,000 children.


The prognosis of perinatal brain damage was studied prospectively in a one year birth cohort of 12,000 children born in Northern Finland in 1966. Children were included in the study if they had an Apgar score of 0 at 1 min or less than 5 at 15 min, convulsions during the neonatal period, or a diagnosis of asphyxia, brain injury or intraventricular haemorrhage, but did not have CNS malformation, chromosomal aberrations or hereditary CNS degeneration. There were 233 children, 19.3 per thousand, of which 134, 58.0% were boys. Eighty-four, 36.4% died during the first 28 days and 7 children died before the age of 14 years, 6 of the latter group being handicapped. There were 44 children, 29.9% who had mental retardation, IQ less than 71, epilepsy or cerebral palsy. With regard to these children 13 had normal school performance, but there were 12 other children in the perinatal brain damage group who needed special education, two of them because of deafness. Perinatal brain damage accounted for 57.5% of all neonatal deaths, 30% of admissions to a special nursery and 12.5% of mental retardation (IQ less than 71), epilepsy and cerebral palsy at the age of 14.

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