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Diabetic Youngsters Show Poor Glycemic Control And Experience Increased Risk For Depressive Symptoms

According to study results, among teenagers with type 1 diabetes, an association between depressive symptoms and suboptimal glycemic control is mediated by poor blood glucose monitoring.

Adolescents with type 1 diabetes have elevated risk for poor blood glucose monitoring (BGM) adherence and suboptimal glycemic control, Dr. Korey K. Hood, of Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center, Ohio, and colleagues write.

Adolescents also experience increased risk for depressive symptoms, which are associated with higher A1C values, they continue. Although BGM non-adherence and depressive symptoms both contribute to higher A1C values, little is known about their collective association with glycemic control.

The researchers investigated 276 young patients with type 1 diabetes in the study with mean age 15.6 years. The Children’s Depression Inventory was used to assess depressive symptoms in the participants. The frequency of BGM and glycemic control were obtained at a clinic visit.

Separate regression analyses demonstrated an association between depressive symptoms and lower BGM frequency and between depressive symptoms and higher A1C values. When depressive symptoms and BGM frequency were included together in the model, only BGM frequency was associated with A1C values and depressive symptoms became nonsignificant.

An association was observed between higher A1C values and lower levels of BGM frequency.

In sum, the investigators write, adolescents with type 1 diabetes who experience elevated depressive symptoms are also likely to experience problems with BGM. When that occurs, suboptimal glycemic control likely results.