Sensory processing difficulties in school-age children born very preterm: An exploratory study

Tinka Bröring, Marsh Königs, Kim J. Oostrom, Harrie N. Lafeber, Anniek Brugman, Jaap Oosterlaan

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

Background Very preterm birth has a detrimental impact on the developing brain, including widespread white matter brain abnormalities that threaten efficient sensory processing. Yet, sensory processing difficulties in very preterm children are scarcely studied, especially at school age. Aims To investigate somatosensory registration, multisensory integration and sensory modulation. Participants 57 very preterm school-age children (mean age = 9.2 years) were compared to 56 gender and age matched full-term children. Methods Group differences on somatosensory registration tasks (Registration of Light Touch, Sensory Discrimination of Touch, Position Sense, Graphestesia), a computerized multisensory integration task, and the parent-reported Sensory Profile were investigated using t-tests and Mann-Whitney U tests. Results In comparison to full-term children, very preterm children are less accurate on somatosensory registration tasks, including Registration of Light Touch (d = 0.34), Position Sense (d = 0.31) and Graphestesia (d = 0.42) and show more sensory modulation difficulties (d = 0.41), including both behavioral hyporesponsivity (d = 0.52) and hyperresponsivity (d = 0.56) to sensory stimuli. Tactile discrimination and multisensory integration efficiency were not affected in very preterm children. Aspects of sensory processing were only modestly related. Conclusion Very preterm children show sensory processing difficulties regarding somatosensory registration and sensory modulation, and preserved multisensory (audio-visual) integration. Follow-up care for very preterm children should involve screening of sensory processing difficulties at least up to school age.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)22-31
Number of pages10
JournalEarly Human Development
Volume117
Early online date8 Dec 2017
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2018

Fingerprint

Touch
Proprioception
Aftercare
Premature Birth
Brain
Nonparametric Statistics

Keywords

  • Multisensory integration
  • Prematurity
  • Sensory modulation
  • Sensory processing
  • Very preterm

Cite this

Bröring, Tinka ; Königs, Marsh ; Oostrom, Kim J. ; Lafeber, Harrie N. ; Brugman, Anniek ; Oosterlaan, Jaap. / Sensory processing difficulties in school-age children born very preterm : An exploratory study. In: Early Human Development. 2018 ; Vol. 117. pp. 22-31.
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abstract = "Background Very preterm birth has a detrimental impact on the developing brain, including widespread white matter brain abnormalities that threaten efficient sensory processing. Yet, sensory processing difficulties in very preterm children are scarcely studied, especially at school age. Aims To investigate somatosensory registration, multisensory integration and sensory modulation. Participants 57 very preterm school-age children (mean age = 9.2 years) were compared to 56 gender and age matched full-term children. Methods Group differences on somatosensory registration tasks (Registration of Light Touch, Sensory Discrimination of Touch, Position Sense, Graphestesia), a computerized multisensory integration task, and the parent-reported Sensory Profile were investigated using t-tests and Mann-Whitney U tests. Results In comparison to full-term children, very preterm children are less accurate on somatosensory registration tasks, including Registration of Light Touch (d = 0.34), Position Sense (d = 0.31) and Graphestesia (d = 0.42) and show more sensory modulation difficulties (d = 0.41), including both behavioral hyporesponsivity (d = 0.52) and hyperresponsivity (d = 0.56) to sensory stimuli. Tactile discrimination and multisensory integration efficiency were not affected in very preterm children. Aspects of sensory processing were only modestly related. Conclusion Very preterm children show sensory processing difficulties regarding somatosensory registration and sensory modulation, and preserved multisensory (audio-visual) integration. Follow-up care for very preterm children should involve screening of sensory processing difficulties at least up to school age.",
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Sensory processing difficulties in school-age children born very preterm : An exploratory study. / Bröring, Tinka; Königs, Marsh; Oostrom, Kim J.; Lafeber, Harrie N.; Brugman, Anniek; Oosterlaan, Jaap.

In: Early Human Development, Vol. 117, 02.2018, p. 22-31.

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review

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T1 - Sensory processing difficulties in school-age children born very preterm

T2 - An exploratory study

AU - Bröring, Tinka

AU - Königs, Marsh

AU - Oostrom, Kim J.

AU - Lafeber, Harrie N.

AU - Brugman, Anniek

AU - Oosterlaan, Jaap

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N2 - Background Very preterm birth has a detrimental impact on the developing brain, including widespread white matter brain abnormalities that threaten efficient sensory processing. Yet, sensory processing difficulties in very preterm children are scarcely studied, especially at school age. Aims To investigate somatosensory registration, multisensory integration and sensory modulation. Participants 57 very preterm school-age children (mean age = 9.2 years) were compared to 56 gender and age matched full-term children. Methods Group differences on somatosensory registration tasks (Registration of Light Touch, Sensory Discrimination of Touch, Position Sense, Graphestesia), a computerized multisensory integration task, and the parent-reported Sensory Profile were investigated using t-tests and Mann-Whitney U tests. Results In comparison to full-term children, very preterm children are less accurate on somatosensory registration tasks, including Registration of Light Touch (d = 0.34), Position Sense (d = 0.31) and Graphestesia (d = 0.42) and show more sensory modulation difficulties (d = 0.41), including both behavioral hyporesponsivity (d = 0.52) and hyperresponsivity (d = 0.56) to sensory stimuli. Tactile discrimination and multisensory integration efficiency were not affected in very preterm children. Aspects of sensory processing were only modestly related. Conclusion Very preterm children show sensory processing difficulties regarding somatosensory registration and sensory modulation, and preserved multisensory (audio-visual) integration. Follow-up care for very preterm children should involve screening of sensory processing difficulties at least up to school age.

AB - Background Very preterm birth has a detrimental impact on the developing brain, including widespread white matter brain abnormalities that threaten efficient sensory processing. Yet, sensory processing difficulties in very preterm children are scarcely studied, especially at school age. Aims To investigate somatosensory registration, multisensory integration and sensory modulation. Participants 57 very preterm school-age children (mean age = 9.2 years) were compared to 56 gender and age matched full-term children. Methods Group differences on somatosensory registration tasks (Registration of Light Touch, Sensory Discrimination of Touch, Position Sense, Graphestesia), a computerized multisensory integration task, and the parent-reported Sensory Profile were investigated using t-tests and Mann-Whitney U tests. Results In comparison to full-term children, very preterm children are less accurate on somatosensory registration tasks, including Registration of Light Touch (d = 0.34), Position Sense (d = 0.31) and Graphestesia (d = 0.42) and show more sensory modulation difficulties (d = 0.41), including both behavioral hyporesponsivity (d = 0.52) and hyperresponsivity (d = 0.56) to sensory stimuli. Tactile discrimination and multisensory integration efficiency were not affected in very preterm children. Aspects of sensory processing were only modestly related. Conclusion Very preterm children show sensory processing difficulties regarding somatosensory registration and sensory modulation, and preserved multisensory (audio-visual) integration. Follow-up care for very preterm children should involve screening of sensory processing difficulties at least up to school age.

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KW - Very preterm

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