Physiotherapy - Research Publications
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ItemPreterm and term-equivalent age general movements and 1-year neurodevelopmental outcomes for infants born before 30weeks' gestationOlsen, JE ; Allinson, LG ; Doyle, LW ; Brown, NC ; Lee, KJ ; Eeles, AL ; Cheong, JLY ; Spittle, AJ (WILEY, 2018-01-01)AIM: To examine the associations between Prechtl's General Movements Assessment (GMA), conducted from birth to term-equivalent age, and neurodevelopmental outcomes at 12 months corrected age, in infants born very preterm. METHOD: One hundred and thirty-seven infants born before 30 weeks' gestation had serial GMA (categorized as 'normal' or 'abnormal') before term and at term-equivalent age. At 12 months corrected age, neurodevelopment was assessed using the Alberta Infant Motor Scale (AIMS); Neurological, Sensory, Motor, Developmental Assessment (NSMDA); and Touwen Infant Neurological Examination (TINE). The relationships between GMA at four time points and 12-month neurodevelopmental assessments were examined using regression models. RESULTS: Abnormal GMA at all time points were associated with worse continuous scores on the AIMS, NSMDA, and TINE (p<0.05). Abnormal GMA before term and at term-equivalent age were associated with increased odds of mild-severe dysfunction on the NSMDA (odds ratio [OR] 4.26, 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.55-11.71, p<0.01; and OR 4.16, 95% CI 1.55-11.17, p<0.01 respectively) and abnormal GMA before term with increased odds of suboptimal-abnormal motor function on the TINE (OR 2.75, 95% CI 1.10-6.85, p=0.03). INTERPRETATION: Abnormal GMA before term and at term-equivalent age were associated with worse neurodevelopment at 12 months corrected age in children born very preterm. WHAT THIS PAPER ADDS: Abnormal general movements before term predict developmental deficits at 1 year in infants born very preterm. General Movements Assessment before term identifies at-risk infants born very preterm.
ItemBrain structure and neurological and behavioural functioning in infants born pretermKelly, CE ; Thompson, DK ; Cheong, JLY ; Chen, J ; Olsen, JE ; Eeles, AL ; Walsh, JM ; Seal, ML ; Anderson, PJ ; Doyle, LW ; Spittle, AJ (WILEY, 2019-07-01)AIM: To examine: (1) relationships between brain structure, and concurrently assessed neurological and behavioural functioning, in infants born preterm at term-equivalent age (TEA; approximately 38-44wks); and (2) whether brain structure-function relationships differ between infants born very (24-29wks) and moderate-late (32-36wks) preterm. METHOD: A total of 257 infants (91 very preterm, 166 moderate-late preterm; 120 males, 137 females) had structural magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and neurological and behavioural assessments (Prechtl's general movements assessment, Neonatal Intensive Care Unit Network Neurobehavioral Scale [NNNS] and Hammersmith Neonatal Neurological Examination [HNNE]). Two hundred and sixty-three infants (90 very preterm, 173 moderate-late preterm; 131 males, 132 females) had diffusion MRI and assessments. Associations were investigated between assessment scores and global brain volumes using linear regressions, regional brain volumes using Voxel-Based Morphometry, and white matter microstructure using Tract-Based Spatial Statistics. RESULTS: Suboptimal scores on some assessments were associated with lower fractional anisotropy and/or higher axial, radial, and mean diffusivities in some tracts: NNNS attention and reflexes, and HNNE total score and tone, were associated with the corpus callosum and optic radiation; NNNS quality of movement with the corona radiata; HNNE abnormal signs with several major tracts. Brain structure-function associations generally did not differ between the very and moderate-late preterm groups. INTERPRETATION: White matter microstructural alterations may be associated with suboptimal neurological and behavioural performance in some domains at TEA in infants born preterm. Brain structure-function relationships are similar for infants born very preterm and moderate-late preterm. WHAT THIS PAPER ADDS: Brain volume is not related to neurological/behavioural function in infants born preterm at term. White matter microstructure is related to some neurological/behavioural domains at term. Brain-behaviour relationships are generally similar for infants born very preterm and moderate-late preterm.
ItemThe Baby Moves smartphone app for General Movements Assessment: Engagement amongst extremely preterm and term-born infants in a state-wide geographical studyKwong, AKL ; Eeles, AL ; Olsen, JE ; Cheong, JLY ; Doyle, LW ; Spittle, AJ (WILEY, 2019-05-01)AIM: The Baby Moves smartphone application is designed for parents to video their infants' spontaneous movement for remote General Movements Assessment (GMA). We aimed to assess the engagement with Baby Moves amongst high- and low-risk infants' families and the socio-demographic variables related to engagement. METHODS: Families of extremely preterm (EP; <28 weeks' gestational age) or extremely low-birthweight (ELBW; <1000 g) infants and term-born controls from a state-wide geographical cohort study were asked to download Baby Moves. Baby Moves provided reminders and instructions to capture videos of their infants' general movements. Parents were surveyed about Baby Moves' usability. RESULTS: The parents of 451 infants (226 EP/ELBW; 225 control) were recruited; 416 (204 EP/ELBW; 212 control) downloaded Baby Moves, and 346 (158 EP/ELBW; 188 control) returned at least one scorable video for remote GMA. Fewer EP/ELBW families submitted a scorable video than controls (70 vs. 83%, respectively; odds ratio (OR) 0.48, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.3-0.79, P = 0.003), but the difference diminished when adjusted for socio-demographic variables (OR 1.09, 95% CI 0.59-2.0, P = 0.79). Families who received government financial support (OR 0.28, 95% CI 0.1-0.78, P = 0.015), who spoke limited English at home (OR 0.39, 95% CI 0.22-0.69, P = 0.001) or with lower maternal education (OR 0.38, 95% CI 0.21-0.68, P = 0.001) were less likely to return a scorable video. Surveyed parents responded mostly positively to Baby Moves' usability. CONCLUSIONS: Most parents in this study successfully used Baby Moves to capture infant movements for remote GMA. Families of lower socio-demographic status used Baby Moves less.
ItemImproving the outcome of infants born at < 30 weeks' gestation - a randomized controlled trial of preventative care at homeSpittle, AJ ; Ferretti, C ; Anderson, PJ ; Orton, J ; Eeles, A ; Bates, L ; Boyd, RN ; Inder, TE ; Doyle, LW (BMC, 2009-12-03)BACKGROUND: Early developmental interventions to prevent the high rate of neurodevelopmental problems in very preterm children, including cognitive, motor and behavioral impairments, are urgently needed. These interventions should be multi-faceted and include modules for caregivers given their high rates of mental health problems. METHODS/DESIGN: We have designed a randomized controlled trial to assess the effectiveness of a preventative care program delivered at home over the first 12 months of life for infants born very preterm (<30 weeks of gestational age) and their families, compared with standard medical follow-up. The aim of the program, delivered over nine sessions by a team comprising a physiotherapist and psychologist, is to improve infant development (cognitive, motor and language), behavioral regulation, caregiver-child interactions and caregiver mental health at 24 months' corrected age. The infants will be stratified by severity of brain white matter injury (assessed by magnetic resonance imaging) at term equivalent age, and then randomized. At 12 months' corrected age interim outcome measures will include motor development assessed using the Alberta Infant Motor Scale and the Neurological Sensory Motor Developmental Assessment. Caregivers will also complete a questionnaire at this time to obtain information on behavior, parenting, caregiver mental health, and social support. The primary outcomes are at 24 months' corrected age and include cognitive, motor and language development assessed with the Bayley Scales of Infant and Toddler Development (Bayley-III). Secondary outcomes at 24 months include caregiver-child interaction measured using an observational task, and infant behavior, parenting, caregiver mental health and social support measured via standardized parental questionnaires. DISCUSSION: This paper presents the background, study design and protocol for a randomized controlled trial in very preterm infants utilizing a preventative care program in the first year after discharge home designed to improve cognitive, motor and behavioral outcomes of very preterm children and caregiver mental health at two-years' corrected age. CLINICAL TRIAL REGISTRATION NUMBER: ACTRN12605000492651.
ItemNeurobehaviour between birth and 40 weeks' gestation in infants born < 30 weeks' gestation and parental psychological wellbeing: predictors of brain development and child outcomesSpittle, AJ ; Thompson, DK ; Brown, NC ; Treyvaud, K ; Cheong, JLY ; Lee, KJ ; Pace, CC ; Olsen, J ; Allinson, LG ; Morgan, AT ; Seal, M ; Eeles, A ; Judd, F ; Doyle, LW ; Anderson, PJ (BMC, 2014-04-24)BACKGROUND: Infants born <30 weeks' gestation are at increased risk of long term neurodevelopmental problems compared with term born peers. The predictive value of neurobehavioural examinations at term equivalent age in very preterm infants has been reported for subsequent impairment. Yet there is little knowledge surrounding earlier neurobehavioural development in preterm infants prior to term equivalent age, and how it relates to perinatal factors, cerebral structure, and later developmental outcomes. In addition, maternal psychological wellbeing has been associated with child development. Given the high rate of psychological distress reported by parents of preterm children, it is vital we understand maternal and paternal wellbeing in the early weeks and months after preterm birth and how this influences the parent-child relationship and children's outcomes. Therefore this study aims to examine how 1) early neurobehaviour and 2) parental mental health relate to developmental outcomes for infants born preterm compared with infants born at term. METHODS/DESIGN: This prospective cohort study will describe the neurobehaviour of 150 infants born at <30 weeks' gestational age from birth to term equivalent age, and explore how early neurobehavioural deficits relate to brain growth or injury determined by magnetic resonance imaging, perinatal factors, parental mental health and later developmental outcomes measured using standardised assessment tools at term, one and two years' corrected age. A control group of 150 healthy term-born infants will also be recruited for comparison of outcomes. To examine the effects of parental mental health on developmental outcomes, both parents of preterm and term-born infants will complete standardised questionnaires related to symptoms of anxiety, depression and post-traumatic stress at regular intervals from the first week of their child's birth until their child's second birthday. The parent-child relationship will be assessed at one and two years' corrected age. DISCUSSION: Detailing the trajectory of infant neurobehaviour and parental psychological distress following very preterm birth is important not only to identify infants most at risk, further understand the parental experience and highlight potential times for intervention for the infant and/or parent, but also to gain insight into the effect this has on parent-child interaction and child development.
ItemContinuum of neurobehaviour and its associations with brain MRI in infants born pretermEeles, AL ; Walsh, JM ; Olsen, JE ; Cuzzilla, R ; Thompson, DK ; Anderson, PJ ; Doyle, LW ; Cheong, JLY ; Spittle, AJ (BMJ PUBLISHING GROUP, 2017-10-01)BACKGROUND: Infants born very preterm (VPT) and moderate-to-late preterm (MLPT) are at increased risk of long-term neurodevelopmental deficits, but how these deficits relate to early neurobehaviour in MLPT children is unclear. The aims of this study were to compare the neurobehavioural performance of infants born across three different gestational age groups: preterm <30 weeks' gestational age (PT<30); MLPT (32-36 weeks' gestational age) and term age (≥37 weeks' gestational age), and explore the relationships between MRI brain abnormalities and neurobehaviour at term-equivalent age. METHODS: Neurobehaviour was assessed at term-equivalent age in 149 PT<30, 200 MLPT and 200 term-born infants using the Neonatal Intensive Care UnitNetwork Neurobehavioral Scale (NNNS), the Hammersmith Neonatal Neurological Examination (HNNE) and Prechtl's Qualitative Assessment of General Movements (GMA). A subset of 110 PT<30 and 198 MLPT infants had concurrent brain MRI. RESULTS: Proportions with abnormal neurobehaviour on the NNNS and the HNNE, and abnormal GMA all increased with decreasing gestational age. Higher brain MRI abnormality scores in some regions were associated with suboptimal neurobehaviour on the NNNS and HNNE. The relationships between brain MRI abnormality scores and suboptimal neurobehaviour were similar in both PT<30 and MLPT infants. The relationship between brain MRI abnormality scores and abnormal GMA was stronger in PT<30 infants. CONCLUSIONS: There was a continuum of neurobehaviour across gestational ages. The relationships between brain abnormality scores and suboptimal neurobehaviour provide evidence that neurobehavioural assessments offer insight into the integrity of the developing brain, and may be useful in earlier identification of the highest-risk infants.
ItemPhysiological stress responses in infants at 29-32 weeks' postmenstrual age during clustered nursing cares and standardised neurobehavioural assessmentsAllinson, LG ; Denehy, L ; Doyle, LW ; Eeles, AL ; Dawson, JA ; Lee, KJ ; Spittle, AJ (BMJ PUBLISHING GROUP, 2017-11-01)OBJECTIVE: To compare the physiological stress responses of infants born <30 weeks' gestational age when undergoing clustered nursing cares with standardised neurobehavioural assessments in neonatal nurseries. DESIGN/METHODS: Thirty-four infants born <30 weeks' gestation were recruited from a tertiary neonatal intensive care unit. Heart rate (HR) and oxygen saturation were recorded during clustered nursing cares and during standardised neurobehavioural assessments (including the General Movements Assessment, Hammersmith Neonatal Neurological Examination and Premie-Neuro Assessment). Two assessors extracted HR and oxygen saturations at 5 s intervals, with HR instability defined either as tachycardia (HR >180 beats per minute (bpm)) or bradycardia (HR <100 bpm). Oxygen desaturations were defined as SpO2<90%. Physiological stability was compared between nursing cares and neurobehavioural assessments using linear (for continuous outcomes) and logistic (HR instability and oxygen desaturation) regression. RESULTS: Compared with clustered nursing cares HR was lower (mean difference -5.9 bpm; 95% CI -6.5 to 5.3; P<0.001) and oxygen saturation higher (mean difference 2.4%; 95% CI 2.1% to 2.6%; P<0.001) during standardised neurobehavioural assessments. Compared with clustered nursing cares neurobehavioural assessments were also associated with reduced odds of tachycardia (OR 0.44, 95% CI 0.22 to 0.86), HR instability (OR 0.43, 95% CI 0.22 to 0.85) and oxygen desaturation (OR 0.43, 95% CI 0.26 to 0.70). CONCLUSIONS: Standardised neurobehavioural assessments are associated with less physiological stress than clustered nursing cares in infants aged 29-32 weeks' postmenstrual age, and are therefore possible without causing undue physiological disturbance in medically stable infants.