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Pediatrics. 1979 Aug;64(2):225-32.

Neonatal signs as predictors of cerebral palsy.


Signs of neonatal neurologic dysfunction, recorded in approximately 40,000 infants, were evaluated prospectively for their ability to predict later motor handicap. Tenfold to 33-fold increases in risk of cerebral palsy (CP) were observed in surviving children with any one of the following characteristics: birth weight less than 2,000 gm, head circumference more than 3 SD above or below the mean, five minute Apgar score of 3 or less, diminished activity or diminished cry lasting for more than one day, thermal instability, need for gavage feeding, hypotonia or hypertonia, single or multiple apneic episodes, or hematocrit less than 40%. Of worse portent, with relative risks exceeding 50, were neonatal seizures or Apgar scores of 3 or less at ten minutes or later. These characteristics were also markers of considerable risk of early death. For 0.5% of surviving infants, an overall impression of abnormality of brain function during the nursery period was recorded by the attending physician; there was a 99-fold increase in CP among these children.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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