Adolescents with type 1 diabetes are faced with a complex set of challenges (developmental changes
and demands of the disease). This study was carried out to assess the role of psychological, behavioral and social concern among Iraqi adolescents with type 1 diabetes.
Adolescents with type 1 diabetes were enrolled in the study from different diabetic centers in Baghdad from 1st June to 21st Dec. 2000. Each participant was interviewed individually. Full information including age, sex, duration, sport activity, frequent hospitalization, visits to diabetic clinic and educational level were included. Psychological burden was assessed by determination of social interaction, family interaction, mood, dissatisfaction with body image, emotions, stress and perception.
Univariate analysis was used to examine which variables were associated significantly and dependently with psychosocial burden.
A total of 160 adolescents with type 1 diabetes were included in the study. Their age was 15.1 ± 2.3
years, 53.8% of them were females. 76.9% of the adolescents reported a history of frequent hospitalization. Psychosocial burden was significantly associated with age and sport activity.
The findings point to importance of psychosocial factors in management of diabetes. More research in
this area is needed to develop psychosocial intervention program and to demonstrate the cost effectiveness of these approaches.
KEY WORDS: Adolescence, diabetes mellitus type1, psychosocial burden