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Appl Neuropsychol Child. 2019 Dec 18:1-11. doi: 10.1080/21622965.2019.1699095. [Epub ahead of print]

Assessment of the executive functions of moderate preterm children in preschool age.

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Universidade Católica Portuguesa, Institute of Health Sciences, Center for Interdisciplinary Research in Health, Portugal.
Center for Research in Neuropsychology and Cognitive Behavioral Intervention (CINEICC) of the University of Coimbra, Coimbra, Portugal.
Neuropaediatric Unit, Garcia de Orta Hospital, Portugal.


This study assesses EF and socioemotional development in 30 MPT children between 4 and 6 years, comparing them with 31 FT children. Working Memory was assessed with Digit Span and Corsi Block, verbal inhibitory control and cognitive flexibility with The Shape School Test, visuomotor inhibition with Go/No-Go and socioemotional development with SDQ for parents. In our study, MPT preschoolers had a poorer working memory, inhibitory control and verbal cognitive flexibility, and more emotional problems compared. Our results suggest that there is no safe gestational age in prematurity, for this reason, EF of preterm children should be evaluated at an early age, so early intervention plans can be implemented, preventing preterm from entering primary education in disadvantage.


Executive functions; moderate preterm; preterm’s emotional problems

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