Neonatal medical research
Children born preterm or who have experienced an event of little oxygen to the brain during birth, may have an increased risk of brain injury. In addition, preterm children face challenges related to immature organs such as immature lungs and the need for breathing support. The neonatal research spans across different topics related to the treatment of sick newborns and preterm children.
Our aim is to contribute to the reduction of risk for permanent injury and to improve the quality of life for these children and their families. The research group is led by Associate professor Ragnhild Støen.
At the moment we have the following research projects:
Computer based video analysis to predict cerebral palsy (CP) in high-risk infants
- Develops and validates a novel, computer based video analysis method for early prediction of CP. The project is conducted in close collaboration with research groups at the Department of Engineering Cybernetics (NTNU), the Department of Neuroscience (NTNU) and the Department of Musicology (University of Oslo). The project has collected the world's largest database of video recordings of high-risk infants (The multisite General Movement Assessment (GMA) project.)
Perinatal asphyxia in a global perspective, including treatment and diagnosis
- Tests the effect of mild hypothermia (cooling) as neuroprotection in infants with neonatal encelphalopathy after perinatal asphyxia in Vellore, India.
- Studies the accuracy of clinical selection criteria for cooling.
Skin-to-skin contact (kangaroo care) and pain reduction
- Studies the effect of skin-to-skin in the delivery room for preterm infants born at 28-32 weeks of gestation on physiological parameters, later cognitive and motor function and maternal mental health.
- Studies the effect of skin-to-skin (kangaroo care) during eye examination of premature infants.
- Studies the lowest effective dose of sucrose as pain reduction during painful procedures.
Breathing support for preterm babies
- Studies different methods for non-invasive ventilator support to preterm infants.
Ethical questions surrounding the treatment of very preterm babies born on the limit of viability
- Studies attitudes towards infants born at the limit of viability among different groups of healthcare providers.
The research group is interdisciplinary and has close contact with other clinical environments and research groups at St. Olavs Hospital and NTNU. Nationally, we collaborate with the University Hospital in Oslo, the University Hospital in Northern Norway and the Hospital in Levanger. Internationally we collaborate with research environments in the USA, India, China, Turkey and South Africa.
- Skin-to-skin care does not impair cerebral oxygenation in preterm infants (NewsWorks, August 2017)
- Is skipping the incubator for immediate skin-to-skin better for preemies? (The Bump, June 2017)
- Hvor tidling kan hudkontakt prioriteres? (Gemini, May 2017) - in Norwegian
- Hvor viktig er hudkontakt for premature? (Forskning.no, May 2017) - in Norwegian