Demographic and clinical correlates of diabetes-related quality of life among youth with type 1 diabetes

J Pediatr. 2012 Aug;161(2):201-7.e2. doi: 10.1016/j.jpeds.2012.01.016. Epub 2012 Feb 22.


Objectives: To evaluate the reliability and cluster structure of the Pediatric Quality of Life Inventory Type 1 Diabetes Module 3.0 (PedsQL-T1DM) and associated subscales and to explore the associations between PedsQL-T1DM total score and demographic and clinical characteristics and clinical indicators among a large racially/ethnically diverse cohort of youth with type 1 diabetes.

Study design: Principal components analysis was conducted on responses from the PedsQL-T1DM child self-report forms completed by SEARCH for Diabetes in Youth study participants aged ≥ 5 years. Multivariate linear regression models were fit to examine the associations among PedsQL-T1DM total score, demographic and clinical characteristics, and clinical indicators.

Results: The sample comprised 2602 youth with a mean age of 13.6 ± 4.1 years and a mean T1DM duration of 62.1 ± 47.0 months. Principal components analysis did not support the 5 existing PedsQL-T1DM subscales. In multivariate analyses, the PedsQL-T1DM total score was negatively and significantly associated with younger age (5-7 years), female sex, receiving insulin by injection (vs pump), having parents without a college degree, Medicaid/Medicare insurance, and having a comorbid medical condition. Youth with poor glycemic control based on their age-specific hemoglobin A1c target values and those with depressive symptoms had significantly lower PedsQL-T1DM scores than their counterparts with good control and no or limited depressive symptoms.

Conclusion: This study has identified sociodemographic and clinical characteristics of youth with T1DM more likely to experience poor diabetes-specific quality of life. The association of lower PedsQL-T1DM scores with depressive symptoms and poor glycemic control is especially concerning and may be the focus of future interventions and studies.

Publication types

  • Multicenter Study
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Blood Glucose / analysis
  • Body Mass Index
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Depression / complications
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1* / blood
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1* / complications
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1* / psychology
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1* / therapy
  • Female
  • Glycated Hemoglobin A / analysis
  • Health Status
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Quality of Life*
  • Socioeconomic Factors
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Young Adult


  • Blood Glucose
  • Glycated Hemoglobin A