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Title

THE EFFECTS OF DEVELOPMENTAL CARE ON SHORT-TERM OUTCOMES OFPRETERM INFANTS: A QUASI-EXPERIMENTAL STUDY

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Abstract

 Background: Technological advances in neonatal CARE have increased the survival rate of preterm infants, but they have not beenable to reduce the risk of the multiple complications developing in them. Objectives: To determine the short-term effects of DEVELOPMENTal CARE on preterm infants. Methods: The present quasi-experimental studywasconductedon105 preterm infants (three groups of 35) born in Al-Zahra hospitalof Tabriz, Iran, from September 2013 to November 2015. The sampling method was convenience, based on study’ s eligibility criteria. The control group received no DEVELOPMENTal CARE. Intervention group 1 received DEVELOPMENTal CARE at the neonatal intensive CAREunit and the neonatal ward, and intervention group 2 received DEVELOPMENTal CARE from birth in the delivery and operating roomsand continued to receive it at the NICU and the neonatal ward. Short-term neonatal OUTCOMEs were analyzed with descriptive andinferential statistics. Results: The overall duration of hospital staywassignificantly shorter in intervention group 2comparedto the control group(meandifference:-13. 6; confidence interval:-24. 8 to-2. 4; P = 0. 013) and intervention group 1 (-12. 5;-23. 7 to-1. 3; P = 0. 024), and the durationof NICU stay was also shorter in intervention group 2 compared to the control group (-12. 4;-22. 2 to-2. 5; P = 0. 009). The incidence ofsepsis was significantly lower in intervention groups 1 and 2 compared to the control group, and the incidence of prematurity anemiaand the need for blood transfusion were also significantly lower in intervention group 2 compared to intervention group 1 andthe control group (P < 0. 05). No significant differences were observed between the groups in terms of neonatal growth parametersat full term corrected age. Conclusions: The results obtained showed that DEVELOPMENTal CARE for preterm infants, especially when initiated as early as in thedelivery and operating room, can improve certain short-term neonatal OUTCOMEs.

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