Positioning for Optimal Outcomes

During the third trimester, the uterus provides the ideal environment for the developing fetus for bone growth and proper development of muscles, joints, and tissue. This provides physiologic flexion, encouraging neuromuscular development and self-regulation. When an infant is born premature they are deprived of this important environment. This presentation will discuss the physiology of the intrauterine environment and the pathophysiology of the extrauterine experience. It will also discuss how supporting proper positioning practices in the NICU will promote the integrity, control, and organization of the musculoskeletal, posture, and sensorimotor systems leading to improved outcomes.

Three brief video demonstrations of positioning are included.


1. List 3 musculoskeletal benefits of the intrauterine experience.

2. Identify 2 positioning morbidities and their functional limitations.

Total CE: 1

NCC Code NNP 3 or 7

NCC Code NIC 1 or 7

NCC Code LRN 2 or 7

Rx = 0

*This presentation was included in the Small Baby Care Specialist® Program

Last updated: October, 2021

Your Instructor

Liz Drake
Liz Drake

Liz Drake has been practicing in the NICU for 34 years. She received her Master’s Degree, Neonatal Nurse Practitioner and Clinical Nurse Specialist certification from UCLA. Quality Improvement, Neuro-protective Care and Family Partnered Care are her passions and expertise. She has a strong desire to teach the healthcare team about the uniqueness and language of the premature infant as every touch and experience can have impact. Through team building, education, academic thinking and direct patient care Liz has a tireless focus on excellence. Her vision for the future is to create passion and desire in others to practice with intention, purpose and to practically integrate evidence into the care provided to infants and families. Liz is a driver for quality improvement initiatives and actively involved with the VON, NICQ Collaborative.

Frequently Asked Questions

When does the course start and finish?
The course starts as soon as you enroll. You will have access to this course (videos) for two months. Please be sure to download lecture handouts for ongoing access to the content presented. You must complete and submit the Evaluation at the end of the course to receive CE.
How can I communicate any questions, comments, or feedback?
We would love to hear from you. Please e-mail us at: [email protected]

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