Cognitive Outcomes and Positional Plagiocephaly. BR Collett, ER Wallace, D Kartin, ML Cunningham, ML Speltz.

Date: February 2019.
Source: Pediatrics, 143 (2) e20182373; DOI: https://doi.org/10.1542/peds.2018-2373.
Background: Studies have revealed an association between positional plagiocephaly and/or brachycephaly (PPB) and development, although little is known about long-term outcomes. We examined cognition and academic achievement in children with and without PPB, testing the hypothesis that children who had PPB as infants would score lower than controls.
Methods: We enrolled 187 school-aged children with a history of PPB and 149 controls. Exposures were the presence or absence and severity of infancy PPB (mild, moderate to severe). Cognitive and academic outcomes were assessed by using the Differential Ability Scales, Second Edition and Wechsler Individual Achievement Test, Third Edition, respectively.
Results: Children with PPB scored lower than controls on most scales of the Differential Ability Scales, Second Edition (standardized effect sizes [ESs] = −0.38 to −0.20) and the Wechsler Individual Achievement Test, Third Edition (ESs = −0.22 to −0.17). Analyses by PPB severity revealed meaningful differences among children with moderate to severe PPB (ESs = −0.47 to −0.23 for 8 of 9 outcomes), but few differences in children with mild PPB (ESs = −0.28 to 0.14).
Conclusions: School-aged children with moderate to severe PPB scored lower than controls on cognitive and academic measures; associations were negligible among children with mild PPB. The findings do not necessarily imply that these associations are causal; rather, PPB may serve as a marker of developmental risk. Our findings suggest a role for assessing PPB severity in clinical practice: providing developmental assessment and intervention for infants with more severe deformation and reassurance and anticipatory guidance for patients with mild deformation.

Article: Cognitive Outcomes and Positional Plagiocephaly.
Authors: Brent R Collett, Erin R Wallace, Deborah Kartin, Michael L Cunningham, Matthew L Speltz.