Relations of diabetes intrusiveness and personal control to symptoms of depression among adults with diabetes

Health Psychol. 1999 Sep;18(5):537-42. doi: 10.1037//0278-6133.18.5.537.


The generalizability of a model linking illness characteristics to psychosocial well-being was tested in a cross-sectional study of 237 adults with type 2 diabetes. It was hypothesized that diabetic complications increase illness intrusiveness, which in turn increases depressive symptomatology either directly or indirectly by reducing personal control over health outcomes. Illness intrusiveness was defined as the result of disruptions of valued activities and interests due to constraints imposed by the illness. An excellent fit of this model to the data was found using structural equation modeling. The model explained 65% of the variance in depressive symptomatology. Assessment of an alternative model excluding personal control suggested that the extent to which diabetes intrudes in life, rather than diabetic complications per se or personal control, is a key factor in relation to depressive symptomatology in individuals with diabetes.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Attitude to Health*
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Depression / complications
  • Depression / diagnosis*
  • Diabetes Complications
  • Diabetes Mellitus / psychology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Life Change Events
  • Middle Aged
  • Psychological Theory*