Research Article  |   December 2015
Sensory Processing Patterns in Children Born Very Preterm
Author Affiliations
  • Stephanie C. Crozier, MOT, is Graduate, Department of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy, Faculty of Medicine, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada
  • Jennifer Z. Goodson, MOT, is Graduate, Department of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy, Faculty of Medicine, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada
  • Margot L. Mackay, BSc OT, is Occupational Therapist, Neonatal Follow-Up Program, British Columbia Children’s and Women’s Hospitals, Vancouver, Canada
  • Anne R. Synnes, MDCM, MHSc, is Neonatalogist, British Columbia Children’s and Women’s Hospitals; Clinical Investigator, Child and Family Research Institute; and Clinical Professor, Department of Pediatrics, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada
  • Ruth E. Grunau, PhD, is Professor, Department of Pediatrics, University of British Columbia, and Senior Scientist, Child and Family Research Institute, Vancouver, Canada
  • Steven P. Miller, MDCM, is Affiliate Scientist, Child and Family Research Institute, and Affiliate Professor, Department of Pediatrics, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada; and Professor, Department of Pediatrics, University of Toronto and The Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
  • Jill G. Zwicker, PhD, OT(C), is Assistant Professor, Department of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy, Faculty of Medicine, University of British Columbia; Scientist Level 1, Child and Family Research Institute; Associate Member, Department of Pediatrics, University of British Columbia; and Clinician Scientist, Sunny Hill Health Centre for Children, Vancouver, Canada; jill.zwicker@ubc.ca
Article Information
Pediatric Evaluation and Intervention / Sensory Integration and Processing / Children and Youth
Research Article   |   December 2015
Sensory Processing Patterns in Children Born Very Preterm
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, December 2015, Vol. 70, 7001220050p1-7001220050p7. doi:10.5014/ajot.2016.018747
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, December 2015, Vol. 70, 7001220050p1-7001220050p7. doi:10.5014/ajot.2016.018747
Abstract

OBJECTIVE. We describe the prevalence and type of sensory processing differences in children born very preterm and determine associations with neonatal risk factors.

METHOD. We assessed sensory processing patterns using the Short Sensory Profile in a retrospective cohort of 160 children age 4 yr born very preterm (≤32 wk gestational age). Data analyses included descriptive statistics to describe the prevalence of sensory processing patterns and logistic regression to examine associations with neonatal risk factors.

RESULTS. Almost half of our cohort (46%) exhibited atypical sensory processing patterns. Lower Apgar scores (p = .03) and longer length of stay in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU; p = .02) independently predicted atypical sensory processing patterns.

CONCLUSION. Children born very preterm are at increased risk for sensory processing differences, which are associated with perinatal risk factors and length of stay in the NICU. Routine evaluation for sensory processing differences of children born preterm is recommended.