Evid Based Nurs 4:75 doi:10.1136/ebn.4.3.75
  • Treatment

Review: certain types of developmental care result in some benefits for preterm infants

Developmental care v control for preterm infants

Intervention Summary of findings (number of trials)
*Corrected age.
†Pooled data.
(i) nesting No difference for length of hospital stay (1) and longer stays in nested infants (1); no difference for weight at discharge (1)
(ii) swaddling Improved neurobehavioural outcome at 34 weeks* (1)
Clustering of nursery care activities No trials found
Modification of external stimuli
(i) vestibular stimulation Increased quiet sleep (2); no difference for physiological variables (1), feeding (2), growth (2), neurodevelopment (3), or age at discharge (1)
(ii) auditory stimulation Decreased respiratory rate (1); no difference for growth (1)
(iii) tactile stimulation Increased weight (2 of 3); reduced length of hospital stay (1); no difference for feeding (1)
(iv) vestibular + auditory Reduced length of hospital stay (1); improved neurodevelopment (2 of 3); no difference for feeding (1); conflicting results for growth (2)
(v) auditory + visual Reduced feeding time (1); increased weight gain (1); longer hours of sleep (1)
(vi) vestibular, auditory, visual, + tactile Reduced pulse and respiration rate (1 of 2); improved feeding (1) and behavioural state (2)
Individualised developmental care
(i) Neonatal Individualized Developmental Care and Assessment Program Decreased ventilation days (2†), tube feeding days (2†), gestational age at discharge (2†), length of hospital stay (2†), and hospital charges (1); improved neurodevelopment at 9 months (1 of 2); no difference for rate of pneumothorax (2†), patent ductus arteriosis (1), chronic lung disease (2†), intraventricular haemorrhage (2†), retinopathy of prematurity (2), sepsis (1), weight gain (3), death before discharge (1), or neurodevelopment at 12 months (1).
(ii) other individualised interventions Decreased ventilation days (1); improved neurodevelopment at 12 but not 24 months(1); no differences for neonatal outcomes (1), feeding and growth (2), and length (2†) and cost of hospital stay (1)

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