Early identification of disabilities enables early intervention by occupational therapists and other health professionals. Because the number of children who can he seen in therapy is limited, it is important to be able to identify those infants most likely to have deficits at a later age. Therefore, it is necessary to study and understand the relationship between infants’ scores on early developmental assessments and later developmental outcomes.

The purpose of this study was to determine the extent to which scores on the Bayley Scales of Infant Development (BSID) during the first 2 years of life are related to motor and cognitive performance at 4½ years for a sample of children identified at birth as biologically high risk. This retrospective study involved 70 children who were evaluated at corrected ages of 4 months, 1 year, 2 years, and 4½ years. The 4-month BSID Mental and Motor Scale scores did not relate significantly to later cognitive motor performance. In contrast, the 12-month BSID Mental Scale scores related significantly to preschool scores on both the motor and cognitive measures. However, the 24-month BSID Mental Scale scores related significantly only to scores on the preschool cognitive measures. Though significant, these correlation coefficients had small magnitudes. Thus, therapists should be cautious about using BSID testing at 4 months, 1 year, and 2 years when attempting to predict later preschool performance.

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