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Res Nurs Health. 1999 Apr;22(2):131-43.

Developmental intervention for preterm infants diagnosed with periventricular leukomalacia.

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University of Illinois at Chicago, College of Nursing, 60612, USA.


Preterm infants with periventricular leukomalacia (PVL) were evaluated to determine whether multi-sensory stimulation is safe and to assess whether it improved neurobehavior and neurodevelopment. Thirty preterm infants with documented PVL were randomly assigned to control (n= 15) or experimental (Group E) (n= 15) groups at 33 weeks post-conceptional age. Group E infants received 15 minutes of auditory, tactile, visual, and vestibular (ATVV) intervention twice a day, five days a week, for four weeks during hospitalization. Repeated measures ANOVA demonstrated that Group E infants experienced significant increases in heart and respiratory rate and a 0.72% drop in hemoglobin saturation, coinciding with a significant behavioral state shift from sleep to alertness during intervention. No differences were identified in neurobehavioral function and neurodevelopment, indicating that Group E suffered no injury. Group E had an average hospital stay nine days shorter than that of controls, with the associated cost savings of $213,840. The earlier hospital discharge indicates that ATVV intervention promotes alertness without compromising physiologic status in vulnerable infants.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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