Introduction: Type 1 diabetes mellitus (DM) is one of the most common chronic diseases in children. The ability of affected children to calculate carbohydrate consumption per meal, apply a correction factor based on their blood glucose and administer an accurate dose of insulin is a key component for good diabetes control. Multiple studies, however, have shown that insulin dosage calculations, particularly carbohydrate assessment, are inaccurate in > 50% of children with DM. Surveys of attendees at diabetes camps show that campers and camp personnel have reported increased confidence and ability in counting carbohydrates and administering insulin, but no quantitative tools have been used in these reports. The aim of this study was to determine whether educational sessions provided during a one-week diabetes camp would improve carbohydrate counting and insulin dosage calculation in children with type 1 DM.

Methods and Materials: We consented 144 parents/campers with type 1 DM to participate in the study. The Pediatric Carbohydrate Quiz (PCQ) was administered to the children before or on the first day of camp. All subjects participated in camp activities, which included dietary education. A post-intervention PCQ was administered on the last day. Pre- and post-camp test scores were compared using the paired t-test.

Results: Over 2 sessions, 79.2% (114/144) of campers completed both questionnaires. Their mean age was 13.8 ± 1.5 years, 61.4% female, 84.2% White and 16.4% first-time campers., The highest possible score on the PCQ administered is 72. The mean pre-camp PCQ score was 59.0 ± 7.1 vs. a mean post-camp score of 61.2± 5.9 (p<0.0001). The degree of improvement for female campers was greater than for males.

Conclusion: Attendance at a one-week session at Camp Midicha improved the ability of adolescent campers to assess carbohydrate counting and calculate insulin doses.


M. Joseph: None. B.M. Degnan: None. S. Szpunar: None.


Ascension St. John Hospital

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