August 3, 2015
Individualized problem-solving skills aimed at improving diabetes management helped children with type 1 diabetes across income levels improve their HbA1c levels over 2 years, according to research in American Journal of Preventive Medicine.
Tonja Nansel, PhD, of the NIH Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development and colleagues analyzed data from 390 families with children aged 9 to 15 years with type 1 diabetes (49% girls; mean age, 12 years; mean HbA1c, 8.4%; pump use, 34%) at four U.S. pediatric endocrinology clinics over 2 years (data collected between 2006 and 2011). Researchers randomly assigned families to a behavioral intervention (n = 182) or usual care (n = 167), stratified by age, HbA1c and income level. The intervention group participated in the WE-CAN diabetes management program; trained nonprofessionals helped families identify a specific diabetes management problem and work to develop a behavioral plan targeting that issue. Blood samples were taken at each visit to measure HbA1c levels.