New trends in instruments for child development screening in Brazil: a systematic review

  • Karolina Alves de Albuquerque Programa de Pós-Graduação em Psicologia, Universidade Federal do Espírito Santo (UFES) - Vitória (ES), Brazil
  • Ana Cristina Barros da Cunha Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro (UFRJ) - Rio de Janeiro (RJ), Brazil
Keywords: Child development, Screening instruments, Surveillance, Development evaluation, Systematic review

Abstract

Introduction: Screening instruments are widely used to monitor child development. The accurate use of standardized tools is an indispensable condition for clinical practice and research aimed at detecting developmental risks and other problems in children.

Objective: The objective of this systematic review was to analyze the use of standardized tools for child development screening used in studies with Brazilian children.

Methods: Two independent researchers selected references in English and Portuguese from five databases through which they searched for studies that used screening tests to assess the development of Brazilian children. All articles were read to determine the main objective, design, target population, the type of screening test, and the purpose of using the test with Brazilian children.

Results: Among the 27 papers analyzed, most of them was observational studies conducted with children up to six years of age, with the main objective to screen development delays and analyze associations between risks and child development. Four instruments were identified: Denver Developmental Screening Test II, Ages and Stages Questionnaire, Bayley Scales of Infant and Toddler Development Screening Test, and Battelle Developmental Inventory Screening Test. Three of these tests have been validated for use in Brazil.

Conclusion: This review suggests that the screening instruments have been used in research for different purposes, such as in the diagnosis of developmental problems, and sometimes inappropriately. Furthermore, studies to validate measures for screening and assessing the development of Brazilian children are still scarce and, therefore, deserve more attention.

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Published
2020-06-17
Section
ORIGINAL ARTICLES