Indexed on: 09 May '13Published on: 09 May '13Published in: BMC Pediatrics
Preterm-born or asphyxiated term-born children who received neonatal intensive care show more emotional and behavioral problems than term-born children without a medical condition. It is uncertain whether regular parenting intervention programs to which the parents of these children are usually referred, are effective in reducing child problem behavior in this specific population. Our objective was to investigate whether a regular, brief parenting intervention, Primary Care Triple P, is effective in decreasing emotional and behavioral problems in preterm-born or asphyxiated term-born preschoolers.For this pragmatic, open randomized clinical trial, participants were recruited from a cohort of infants admitted to the neonatal intensive care units (NICU) of two Dutch hospitals. Children born with a gestational age <32 weeks or birth weight <1500 g and children born at a gestational age 37-42 weeks with perinatal asphyxia were included. After screening for a t-score ≥60 on the Child Behavior Checklist (CBCL), children were randomly assigned to Primary Care Triple P (n = 34) or a wait-list control group (n = 33). The primary outcome was child emotional and behavioral problems reported by parents on the CBCL, 6 months after the start of the trial.There was no effect of the intervention on the CBCL at the trial endpoint (t64 = 0.54, P = .30). On secondary measurements of child problem behavior, parenting style, parenting stress, and parent perceived child vulnerability, groups either did not differ significantly or the intervention group showed more problems. In both the intervention and control group there was a significant decrease in emotional and behavioral problems during the trial.Primary Care Triple P, a brief parenting intervention, is not effective in reducing child emotional and behavioral problems in preterm-born children or term-born children with perinatal asphyxia.Netherlands National Trial Register (NTR): NTR2179.