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Clin Perinatol. 1997 Sep;24(3):567-87.

Brain injury in the premature infant. Neuropathology, clinical aspects, pathogenesis, and prevention.

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Department of Neurology, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts, USA.


There are two principal lesions that underlie brain injury and the neurologic manifestations in the premature infant: periventricular hemorrhagic infarction and periventricular leukomalacia. Both of these lesions may be potentially preventable: periventricular hemorrhagic infarction by preventing germinal matrix-IVH, and periventricular leukomalacia by detecting impaired cerebrovascular regulation with near-infrared spectroscopy, preventing the impaired cerebral blood flow and interrupting the cascade to oligodendroglial cell death, perhaps by such agents as free-radical scavengers. Prenatal magnesium sulfate also may be valuable. The greatest progress toward prevention has been made regarding periventricular hemorrhagic infarction, but the advent of new technologies, especially near-infrared spectroscopy, and of new insights into the cellular basis for oligodendroglial vulnerability provide hope for prevention of periventricular leukomalacia.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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