Premature children face a series of unique challenges in their lives. For instance, although an infant’s chronological age on the day they are born is 0 years and 0 months, an infant born 4 months prematurely can be developmentally viewed as 0 years and -4 months old. This deficit is accounted for by early developmental assessments with metrics like “corrected age,” which adjusts an infant’s age by subtracting the period of the missed gestational period due to early birth. The corrected age is used for up to 2 years post-birth, by which time most preterm children are expected to have “caught up” to their full-term counterparts or otherwise be labeled as delayed. From then on, the progression to subsequent developmental milestones, like kindergarten entry, is determined by using chronological age (ie, turning 5 years old by a certain “cutoff” date).

Yet, there is evidence that this discarding of gestation period...

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