Document Detail

Maternal behavior toward premature twins: implications for development.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  11463144     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
Assisted reproductive techniques and fertility enhancing therapies have increased multiple births and, therefore, the risk of prematurity and its developmental consequences. Parent intervention is an effective source of compensation for the cognitive effects of prematurity. We hypothesized that relative to parents of preterm singletons, parents of preterm twins are less able to provide such enhancing care, resulting in a developmental disadvantage for preterm twins. Maternal-infant interactions of premature singletons (n = 22; birth weight = 1668 +/- 350 g, gestational age = 32.3 +/- 2.1 weeks) and premature twins (n = 8; birth weight = 1618 +/- 249 g; gestational age = 32.0 +/- 2.6 weeks) with comparable demographic and medical status were observed at home at 1 and 8 months corrected age using a 30 min checklist of developmentally facilitative behavior. Mental (MDI) and psychomotor (PDI) indices of the Bayley Scales of Infant Development and Caldwell Home Observations for Measurement of the Environment (HOME) inventories were administered (18 months corrected age). Compared with mothers of premature singletons, mothers of premature twins exhibited fewer initiatives (P < 0.001) and responses (P < 0.01) and were less responsive to positive signals (P < 0.01) and crying (P < 0.01). Unprompted by the infant, twin mothers lifted or held (P < 0.05), touched (P < 0.01), patted (P < 0.05) or talked (P < 0.01) less. Singleton MDIs surpassed twins (119.4 +/- 7.7 vs 103.6 +/- 7.7; P < 0.01). Maternal verbal behavior and the acceptance of child factor (HOME), both favoring singletons, correlated with MDI (R-square = 0.46, P < 0.0002). Mothers of premature twins exhibited fewer initiatives and responses toward offspring than did mothers of premature singletons. Maternal behavior was predictive of cognitive development.
B M Ostfeld; R H Smith; M Hiatt; T Hegyi
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Comparative Study; Journal Article; Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Twin research : the official journal of the International Society for Twin Studies     Volume:  3     ISSN:  1369-0523     ISO Abbreviation:  Twin Res     Publication Date:  2000 Dec 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2001-07-20     Completed Date:  2001-08-09     Revised Date:  2007-11-14    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  9815819     Medline TA:  Twin Res     Country:  England    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  234-41     Citation Subset:  IM    
Division of Neonatology, UMDNJ-Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, St Peter's University Hospital, New Brunswick, NJ 08903, USA.
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MeSH Terms
Child Development*
Gestational Age
Infant, Newborn
Infant, Premature / psychology*
Longitudinal Studies
Maternal Behavior*
Mother-Child Relations*
Mothers / psychology*
Predictive Value of Tests
Regression Analysis
Risk Factors
Stress, Psychological / psychology
Twins / psychology*
Verbal Behavior
Grant Support

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

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