Serial neurosonographic examinations are routinely performed at frequent intervals during the nursery course of all preterm infants of 33 weeks or less gestation who are admitted to the intensive care nursery of Thomas Jefferson University Hospital. After discharge, the following survivors during the past 5 years had repeated ultrasound examinations until the anterior fontanel closed and clinical assessments until the presence or absence of cerebral palsy at a minimum age of 12 months was established: (1) all infants with grade III/IV intracranial hemorrhage, periventricular echodensity and periventricular cyst formation, (2) selected infants with either normal ultrasound findings or grade I/II intracranial hemorrhage. Fifteen survivors were found to have cerebral palsy, and all had at least one of the following ultrasound abnormalities: (a) diffuse, bilateral, and multiple periventricular cysts 3 mm or more in diameter that persisted beyond term age, (b) bilateral asymmetrical dilation of the lateral ventricles following grade III intracranial hemorrhage with small periventricular cysts, and (c) ventricular porencephaly following an ipsilateral grade IV intracranial hemorrhage. The periventricular cysts were usually preceded by extensive echodensities of the white matter surrounding the lateral ventricles; these findings were suggestive of periventricular leukomalacia and were the most common abnormal findings on ultrasound in the infants with cerebral palsy. Of 124 infants without cerebral palsy, 121 had no or less severe abnormal findings on ultrasound; the exceptions were three infants with bilateral persistent large periventricular cysts who had normal motor development in late infancy.
|Number of pages
|Published - Oct 1 1986
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health