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Prematurity and Low Birth Weight Tied to Hyperactivity Disorder

Prematurity and Low Birth Weight Tied to Hyperactivity Disorder

AARHUS, Denmark, June 5 ? Children born prematurely and those born at term but with low birth weights have an increased risk of developing so-called hyperkinetic disorder, according to researchers here.

The syndrome, hyperkinetic disorder, includes a variety of activity and attention disturbances-hyperactivity, poor attention span, impulsive behavior--equivalent to attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD combined type), according to a report in the Archives of Disease in Childhood. It is the fourth most frequent discharge diagnosis in child psychiatry in Denmark.

The finding emerged from a 14-year birth-record study that included a comparison of 834 children diagnosed with hyperkinetic disorder between ages of two and 18 (median 8.8) and 20,100 controls with no mental disorders.

Data came from four Danish longitudinal registers, while controls were randomly selected from births during the same period, said Karen Linnet, M.D., Ph.D., at Aarhus University Hospital here, and colleagues.


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