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Very preterm/very low birthweight infants' attachment: infant and maternal characteristics.
Arch Dis Child Fetal Neonatal Ed. 2014 Jan; 99(1):F70-5.AD

Abstract

OBJECTIVE

To investigate whether there are differences in attachment security and disorganisation between very preterm or very low birthweight (VP/VLBW) (<32 weeks gestation or <1500 g birthweight) and full-term infants (37-42 weeks gestation) and whether the pathways to disorganised attachment differ between VP/VLBW and full-term infants.

DESIGN

The sample with complete longitudinal data consisted of 71 VP/VLBW and 105 full-term children and their mothers matched for twin status, maternal age, income and maternal education. Infant attachment was assessed with the Strange Situation Assessment at 18 months of age. Maternal sensitivity in the VP/VLBW and full-term samples was rated by neonatal nurses and community midwives in the neonatal period, respectively, and mother-infant interaction was observed at 3 months. Infant difficultness was assessed by maternal report at 3 months and infant's developmental status was assessed with the Bayley Scales (BSID-II).

RESULTS

Most VP/VLBW (61%) and full-term (72%) children were found to be securely attached. However, more VP/VLBW (32%) than full-term children (17%) had disorganised attachment. Longitudinal path analysis found that maternal sensitivity was predictive of attachment disorganisation in full-term children. In contrast, infant's distressing cry and infant's developmental delay, but not maternal sensitivity, were predictive of disorganised attachment in VP/VLBW children.

CONCLUSIONS

A third of VP/VLBW children showed disorganised attachment. Underlying neurodevelopmental problems associated with VP/VLBW birth appear to be a common pathway to a range of social relationship problems in this group. Clinicians should be aware that disorganised attachment and relationship problems in VP/VLBW infants are frequent despite sensitive parenting.

Authors+Show Affiliations

Department of Psychology, Lifespan Health and Wellbeing Group, University of Warwick, Coventry, UK.No affiliation info availableNo affiliation info available

Pub Type(s)

Journal Article
Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

Language

eng

PubMed ID

23792355

Citation

Wolke, Dieter, et al. "Very Preterm/very Low Birthweight Infants' Attachment: Infant and Maternal Characteristics." Archives of Disease in Childhood. Fetal and Neonatal Edition, vol. 99, no. 1, 2014, pp. F70-5.
Wolke D, Eryigit-Madzwamuse S, Gutbrod T. Very preterm/very low birthweight infants' attachment: infant and maternal characteristics. Arch Dis Child Fetal Neonatal Ed. 2014;99(1):F70-5.
Wolke, D., Eryigit-Madzwamuse, S., & Gutbrod, T. (2014). Very preterm/very low birthweight infants' attachment: infant and maternal characteristics. Archives of Disease in Childhood. Fetal and Neonatal Edition, 99(1), F70-5. https://doi.org/10.1136/archdischild-2013-303788
Wolke D, Eryigit-Madzwamuse S, Gutbrod T. Very Preterm/very Low Birthweight Infants' Attachment: Infant and Maternal Characteristics. Arch Dis Child Fetal Neonatal Ed. 2014;99(1):F70-5. PubMed PMID: 23792355.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - Very preterm/very low birthweight infants' attachment: infant and maternal characteristics. AU - Wolke,Dieter, AU - Eryigit-Madzwamuse,Suna, AU - Gutbrod,Tina, Y1 - 2013/06/21/ PY - 2013/6/25/entrez PY - 2013/6/25/pubmed PY - 2014/2/14/medline KW - Child Psychology KW - Neurodevelopment SP - F70 EP - 5 JF - Archives of disease in childhood. Fetal and neonatal edition JO - Arch Dis Child Fetal Neonatal Ed VL - 99 IS - 1 N2 - OBJECTIVE: To investigate whether there are differences in attachment security and disorganisation between very preterm or very low birthweight (VP/VLBW) (<32 weeks gestation or <1500 g birthweight) and full-term infants (37-42 weeks gestation) and whether the pathways to disorganised attachment differ between VP/VLBW and full-term infants. DESIGN: The sample with complete longitudinal data consisted of 71 VP/VLBW and 105 full-term children and their mothers matched for twin status, maternal age, income and maternal education. Infant attachment was assessed with the Strange Situation Assessment at 18 months of age. Maternal sensitivity in the VP/VLBW and full-term samples was rated by neonatal nurses and community midwives in the neonatal period, respectively, and mother-infant interaction was observed at 3 months. Infant difficultness was assessed by maternal report at 3 months and infant's developmental status was assessed with the Bayley Scales (BSID-II). RESULTS: Most VP/VLBW (61%) and full-term (72%) children were found to be securely attached. However, more VP/VLBW (32%) than full-term children (17%) had disorganised attachment. Longitudinal path analysis found that maternal sensitivity was predictive of attachment disorganisation in full-term children. In contrast, infant's distressing cry and infant's developmental delay, but not maternal sensitivity, were predictive of disorganised attachment in VP/VLBW children. CONCLUSIONS: A third of VP/VLBW children showed disorganised attachment. Underlying neurodevelopmental problems associated with VP/VLBW birth appear to be a common pathway to a range of social relationship problems in this group. Clinicians should be aware that disorganised attachment and relationship problems in VP/VLBW infants are frequent despite sensitive parenting. SN - 1468-2052 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/23792355/Very_preterm/very_low_birthweight_infants'_attachment:_infant_and_maternal_characteristics_ L2 - https://fn.bmj.com/lookup/pmidlookup?view=long&amp;pmid=23792355 DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -