HealthDay News — For preterm infants, iodide supplementation is not associated with neurodevelopmental benefit at age 2 years, according to a study published online April 14 in Pediatrics.

Fiona L.R. Williams, PhD, from the University of Dundee in the United Kingdom, and colleagues conducted a randomized controlled trial of iodide supplementation versus placebo in 1273 infants <31 weeks’ gestation from 21 UK neonatal units. Within 42 hours of birth, trial solutions (sodium iodide or sodium chloride) were given to the equivalent of 34 weeks’ gestation. The Bayley Scales of Infant Development-III were used to assess the primary outcome of neurodevelopmental status at age 2 years.

One hundred thirty-one infants died, and neurodevelopmental assessments were performed in 498 and 499 iodide- and placebo-supplemented infants, respectively. The researchers found that the primary outcome did not differ significantly between the intervention and placebo groups: mean difference cognitive score, -0.34 (95% CI, -2.57 to 1.89); motor composite score, 0.21 (95% CI, -2.23 to 2.65); language composite score, -0.05 (95% CI, -2.48 to 2.39). There was a weak interaction between iodide supplementation and hypothyroxinemic status in the language composite score and one subtest score.

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“Overall iodide supplementation provided no benefit to neurodevelopment measured at 2 years of age,” the authors write.

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Williams FLR, Ogston S, Hume R, et al. Supplemental iodide for preterm infants and developmental outcomes at 2 years: an RCT [April 14, 2017]. Pediatrics. doi:10.1542/peds.2016-3703