Introduction: Deterioration in glycemic control often occurs during adolescence in children with type 1 diabetes (T1D). Shared appointments have been shown to improve quality of life scores and treatment adherence in children with chronic illnesses.
Objective: To examine the impact of combined individual visits and shared education appointments in adolescents with T1D on diabetes control, self-management, and diabetes related distress.
Methods: Adolescents ages 11-19y with T1D for over 1y and poor control/adherence defined by HbA1C > 9%, 2 or more DKA episodes in the past year or 2 missed appointments were enrolled in a 6 month DKA prevention program consisting of monthly individual visits followed by an hour long shared education visit. HbA1C levels were obtained every 3 mo. Participants completed a diabetes distress score (DDS) and diabetes self-management questionnaire (DMSQ) prior to participation and at the 6th visit. Participants were followed for an additional 6 months after completion of the program. Those who attended 2 or more session were included in the analysis.
Results: Ten adolescents (8 female, average age 13.9 y, diabetes duration from 1-11 y, average A1C 10.6% SD 2.0) were enrolled. None of the 10 participants had DKA during the program. There was no statistically significant change in A1C. No changes were noted in the DDS; however there was improvement in dietary control on DMSQ from 4.0 to 5.7 (p value 0.058). Six attended 5 or more of the sessions. Those 6 participants had a decrease in average A1C by 0.3% over 6 mo with no DKA episodes within 6 mo of completion. The 4 participants who attended 2-4 sessions had an increase in average A1C of 0.85% over the same period and 3 had DKA episodes within 6 mo after completion.
Conclusions: Shared education visits may be a valuable approach to the care of adolescents with diabetes. No episodes of DKA and no significant changes in glycemic control were noted in 6 mo; however larger long-term studies are needed to explore whether continued shared visits can improve glycemic control.
M. Wilkes: None. T. Murphy: None. A. Aluf: None. D. Sperber: None. A. Sherry: None. S. Sethuram: None. L. Choleva: None. R. Rapaport: None.