Author(s): Grant P, Dworakowska D, DeZoysa N, Barnes D
Abstract Share this page
Abstract BACKGROUND: Continuous subcutaneous insulin infusion (CSII) is generally successful for patients with type 1 diabetes in improving glycaemic control, alleviating the burden of hypoglycaemia and improving the quality of life. There is however, a cohort of patients who fail to thrive on pump therapy and psychological factors or "brittleness" have been posited as a cause for this. We aimed to assess the extent and spectrum of psychological illness in a population of pump patients. METHODS: We analysed the patient data and records of 350 patients with type 1 diabetes who formed the insulin pump patient population from a large teaching hospital and compared them with an age and sex matched reference population of patients with type 1 diabetes. We quantified the prevalence of anxiety and depression before and after the initiation of pump therapy and looked to see whether this had implications for changes in glycaemic control and hypoglycaemia reduction. RESULTS: Mental health problems amongst patients selected for CSII occur significantly more frequently than in a matched population with type 1 diabetes (51\% vs 40\%, P<0.05). Depression and anxiety were more prevalent in the CSII group. Of those with mental health problems, there is a tendency to do less well in terms of improvements in glycaemic control as indicated by changes in HbA(1c) and hypoglycaemia reduction--the latter most notable in patients with co-existent depression. CONCLUSIONS: The incidence and prevalence of mental health problems in individuals with diabetes is greater than that of the general population. In patients who are selected to go onto insulin pump therapy, the incidence is again greater. We have shown that in those with psychological illness, they tend to do less well in terms of improving their overall diabetes control. These results suggest that CSII may not be a suitable route of therapy alone for all of those who would fulfill the traditional criteria and suggest that psychological assessment, therapy and intervention may be an altogether more appropriate or alternative or adjunctive course of action in supporting their diabetes self management. The wider implication is that all the patients with diabetes should be regularly assessed for psychological problems and that there needs to be greater psychology/psychiatric support available to intensive diabetes clinics, especially as part of a pre-pump pathway. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved.
This article was published in Diabetes Metab
and referenced in Rheumatology: Current Research