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Early Hum Dev. 1994 Apr 15;36(3):191-203.

Educational capacity of low birth weight children up to the age of 24.

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Department of Public Health Science and General Practice, University of Oulu, Finland.


Participation in further education after compulsory schooling was examined for 377 LBW (low birth weight, < 2500 g) and 10,614 NBW (normal birth weight, > or = 2500 g) children and completion of this further education among the same population in a 1-year birth cohort for Northern Finland in 1966. There was no difference in enrollment for further education, the percentage for non-enrollment was 8.5% for LBW and 7.0% for NBW children, and the healthy LBW children even enrolled more often than the healthy NBW children. Enrollment among the disabled LBW children, however, was significantly poorer than among the disabled NBW children, 57.1% and 36.8%, respectively failing to enroll. The disabled LBW girls in particular enrolled poorly, 76.9% of them failing to do so. Completing further studies up to the age of 24 was rarer among the LBW children than among the NBW children, 17.6% of them failing to graduate compared to 13.8% of the NBW children. If the disabled children were excluded, however, the healthy LBW children succeeded as well as the healthy NBW children. The LBW girls, especially the disabled ones, graduated the least often. When excluding the disabled children and controlling confounding variables by stratification, low birth weight did not affect non-enrollment or non-graduation. Altogether, the success of the LBW children in their post compulsory education was satisfactory except for the disabled LBW children, especially the girls.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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