Developmental lags in preterm infants from one to three years of age.

J. A. Ungerer*, M. Sigman

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

    73 Citations (Scopus)


    Assessments of play, sensorimotor, language, and general developmental skills were administered to 20 preterm and 20 full-term infants at comparable corrected and postnatal ages in 5 sessions during the second and third years of life. Clear effects of biological maturity on play and sensorimotor skills were demonstrated at 13 1/2 months, and less pervasive effects remained at 22 months. Furthermore, the preterm infants were significantly delayed in sensorimotor, personal-social, and gross motor abilities at 13 1/2 months and in language abilities at 22 months beyond that predicted by biological maturity alone. While these deficits were mostly overcome by 3 years, the preterm infants performed somewhat more poorly on visual information-processing tasks. This investigation demonstrated that the development of representational abilities as manifested in play and sensorimotor behaviors was clearly related to corrected age rather than postnatal age.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)1217-1228
    Number of pages12
    JournalChild Development
    Issue number5
    Publication statusPublished - Oct 1983


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