Preemies may have higher risk of mental disorders

June 1, 2012 2:51:23 PM PDT
Babies born much earlier than their due date may have an increased risk of mental disorders later in life.

New research finds very premature babies are more likely to develop disorders such as psychosis, bipolar disorder and depression. Those illnesses show up at age 16 and older.

Researchers think the increased risk may have to do with small but important differences in brain development in babies born before 40 weeks. The study, to be published in the "Archives Of General Psychiatry Journal" also found smaller but significant increased psychiatric risks for babies born only moderately early-- at between 32 and 36 weeks.


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