Family characteristics of diabetic adolescents: Relationship to metabolic control

B. J. Anderson, J. P. Miller, W. F. Auslander, J. V. Santiago

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This research compares the family environments of diabetic adolescents in good (HbA[1c] < 10), fair (10 ≥ HbA[1c] ≤ 14), and poor (HbA[1C] > 14) control. Fifty-eight adolescents diagnosed with type I diabetes and their parents (mothers) were independently assessed with structured interviews, the Moos Family Environment Scale, and adolescents also completed the Piers-Harris Children's Self-Concept Scale. As compared with adolescents in poor control, those in good control reported fewer diabetes-related symptoms and had less anxiety and a more positive self-concept. Well-controlled youths also reported more cohesion and less conflict among family members. More parents of well-controlled youths stated that family members were encouraged to behave independently. In addition, more parents of poorly controlled adolescents believed that diabetes had negatively affected the child's personality, physical well-being, schooling, and participation in activities away from home. These findings suggest a complex interplay between the diabetic adolescent's psychological and physical functioning, metabolic control, and the family environment.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)586-594
Number of pages9
JournalDiabetes care
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jan 1 1981


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