Diabetes distress is impacting outcomes

IN AN attempt to warn their patients of potential complications in the hope of preventing them, a doctor may casually mention gangrene, not realising the terrified patient may be conjuring up images of their blackened foot suddenly dropping off. Could such well-intentioned talk be playing a role in heightened anxiety in patients with diabetes? 

Professor Lesley Campbell, senior clinical researcher at Sydney’s Garvan Institute and Director of Diabetes Services at St. Vincent’s Hospital, has just published the results of a study in 184 outpatients with both type 1 (25%) and type 2 diabetes (75%). 

Along with checking HbA1c levels and taking a mental health history, the participants were asked to complete a Problem Areas in Diabetes (PAID) questionnaire to measure disease-related distress. 

They discovered a strong correlation between levels of distress and blood sugar control.

Professor Campbell suggests well