Background: Diabetes distress is a potential barrier to self-management and satisfactory glycaemic control. A structured focus on diabetes distress using the Problem Areas in Diabetes (PAID) scale may improve the health of people with diabetes. We designed the DiaPROM trial, evaluating the effect of using electronically captured PAID in clinical practice, to reduce diabetes distress among adults with type 1 diabetes.

Methods: In this pilot trial, we aimed to evaluate PAID scores pre and post intervention and identify patients with elevated scores. We randomly assigned participants (18-≤40 yrs) at an outpatient clinic to standard care or an intervention were physicians referred individuals with a PAID score ≥30 or single item(s) ≥3 (moderately high distress) to minimum two nurse appointments. Following a communication manual based on empowerment and self-determination theory, reported problem areas were reviewed and discussed.

Results: We recruited 79 adults with type 1 diabetes (age 27.2 ±5.0 yrs, diabetes duration 13.7 ±7.0 yrs, HbA1c 65.4 ±14.5 mmol/mol). In the intervention group (n=39), baseline PAID score was 27.7 ±16.8; 23 (59%) participants qualified for additional follow up and 17 (44%) accepted referral, attending a mean of 2.2 ±1.1 appointments. At 12 month follow up, the intervention group (n=31) mean score was 21.7 ±14.4 (mean change 3.7 ±13.0), with 13 (42%) reporting moderately high distress. The control group (n=40) scored 24.1 ±14.3 at baseline and 26.2 ±14.5 at 12 months (n=36), with respectively 19 (48%) and 20 (56%) patients reporting moderately high distress. Between-group difference at 12 months was 5.5 (95% CI 0.25, 10.7).

Conclusion: Half of the participants reported diabetes distress levels qualifying for additional follow up, which has consequences for scaling a future RCT. Although the study was not powered to estimate intervention effects, we identified a promising PAID score reduction in the intervention group which was not observed for the controls.


I. Hernar: None. M. Graue: None. D. Richards: None. R.B. Strandberg: None. K.F. Løvaas: None. T. Madsen: None. G.S. Tell: None. A. Haugstvedt: None.

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