The newborn is comparatively small: low weight, short in length and small head size.
It has been found that a small birth length/birth weight increases the risk of many disorders many years later (sometimes 50-60 years later), such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease, high cholesterol, etc. Before and immediately after birth, the body “adapts” to the living conditions, referred to as ‘early life programming’. If there is, for example, little nutrition available at that moment, the body will be programmed not to become too big.
A long-term effect of dysmaturity can be permanent short stature. Almost all children make up for this growth delay at birth during the first 4 years of life, usually in the first 12 months. This does not happen in 5-10% of the children, and they remain small even as adults.