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AACN Clin Issues. 1998 Feb;9(1):11-24; quiz 143-4.

Neurodevelopmental consequences associated with the premature neonate.

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Neonatal Follow-Up Program, Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA.


Changes in neonatal care have resulted in an increased survival rate among low birth weight infants. Because their neurologic system is immature, these infants are vulnerable to neurologic injury. Major and minor neurodevelopmental consequences can result. Most preterm infants survive without serious difficulties; however, the lower the birth weight, the higher the likelihood that problems will occur. Numerous factors can increase a preterm infant's risk for disease and impairment, and the neonatal nurse can perform a significant role in minimizing this risk.

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