This prospective longitudinal study was designed to evaluate the effects of a multidisciplinary infant development program (IDP) on the mental and physical development of low birth weight infants (<1,800 g). Infants in the neonatal intensive care were randomly assigned to the IDP or to traditional care (control group). IDP infants received developmental interventions in the hospital and at home through the first 2 years of life. Counseling and parenting education were provided to their parents during this same period. The control group received all the postnatal care and referrals customarily given in traditional care. Both IDP and control infants were enrolled in an independent follow-up program, which used the Bayley Scales of Infant Development in a blind evaluation design. The IDP group had a significantly lower incidence of developmental delay (P < .05) and scored significantly higher than the control group (P < .05) on mean mental and physical indices at 12 and 24 months of adjusted age.
- Received July 1, 1985.
- Copyright © 1987 by the American Academy of Pediatrics