(HealthDay News) – Preschool-aged children with deformational plagiocephaly (DP) have lower scores on a measure of child development than unaffected controls, according to a study published online Dec. 24 in Pediatrics.
Brent R. Collett, PhD, from the University of Washington in Seattle, and colleagues followed 224 children with DP and 231 children without diagnosed DP from infancy. Child development was assessed at 36 months using the Bayley Scales of Infant and Toddler Development, Third Edition (BSID-III).
The researchers found that, compared to children without DP, those with DP scored lower on all scales of the BSID-III. The largest differences were noted in cognition, language, and parent-reported adaptive behavior, while the smallest difference was seen in motor development. Compared to unaffected controls, BSID-III scores were also lower for children in the control group who did not have previously diagnosed DP but who were later rated by pediatricians to have at least mild cranial deformation.
“These findings do not imply that DP causes developmental problems, but DP may nonetheless serve as a marker of developmental risk,” the authors write. “We encourage clinicians to screen children with DP for developmental concerns to facilitate early identification and intervention.”