Purpose: The purpose of this meta-analysis was to meet the need to quantify the influence of diabetes self-management training on quality of life (QOL) of adult diabetes patients.
Methods: Extensive literature searching located published and unpublished diabetes self-management intervention studies that measured QOL outcomes among at least 5 subjects with type 1 or 2 diabetes. Data were extracted from primary study reports which included interventions designed to improve diabetes self-management and adequate data to calculate effect sizes. Random-effects meta-analytic procedures were used to estimate overall effects between treatment and control groups at outcome assessment and between baseline and outcome data for both treatment subjects and control subjects.
Results: Exhaustive searching yielded 20 comparisons across 1892 subjects. The comparisons between treatment and control group outcomes following interventions yielded an effect size of 0.281. The comparisons between treatment group at baseline and outcome measurement yielded an effect size of 0.312 to 0.313. Each of these effect sizes were statistically significant, meaning that the hypothesis that interventions to improve diabetes self-management results in increased QOL was supported. Control subjects did not experience improved QOL while participating in studies.
Conclusions: These findings document that people with diabetes experience improved QOL from participation in diabetes self-management training programs. Future diabetes self-management intervention studies should include quality of life outcomes so that this important outcome can be further studied. After more primary studies are available, future meta-analyses can explore important moderator analyses.