Children born extremely preterm frequently have developmental coordination disorder (DCD). We aimed to evaluate perinatal risk factors for DCD.
Swedish national cohort study including 226 children born before 27 gestational weeks without major neurodevelopmental disabilities at 6.5 years. Outcome was DCD, defined as ≤5 percentile on the Movement Assessment Battery for Children-Second Edition. Perinatal risk factors were evaluated using multivariable logistic regression.
DCD was present in 84/226 (37.2%) children. Of the risk factors known at 40 weeks gestation independent and significant risk factors for DCD were: mother’s age at delivery (odds ratio [OR] 1.73, 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.07-2.80); preeclampsia (2.79, 1.14-6.80); mother born in a non-Nordic country (2.23, 1.00-4.99); gestational per week increase (0.70, 0.50-0.99) and retinopathy of prematurity (2.48, 1.26-4.87). Of factors known at discharge, postnatal steroids exposure (2.24, 1.13-4.46) and mechanical ventilation (1.76, 1.06-2.09) were independent risk factors when added to the model in separate analyses.
The risk of DCD in children born extremely preterm was multifactorial and associated with gestational age largely mediated by ROP, maternal factors, preeclampsia, administration of postnatal steroids and mechanical ventilation. These risk factors are common among children born extremely preterm, contributing to their high risk of DCD.

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